Guidance

Apply for an exemption from Making Tax Digital for VAT

Check if you can apply for an exemption or opt out from Making Tax Digital for VAT.

All VAT registered businesses that have a taxable turnover above £85,000 must now follow the rules for Making Tax Digital for VAT.

Check if you’re already exempt

You’re automatically exempt from Making Tax Digital for VAT and do not need to apply if:

  • your taxable turnover has not been above £85,000 since April 2019
  • you’re already exempt from filing VAT Returns online
  • you or your business are subject to an insolvency procedure

You can still sign up voluntarily.

Apply for an exemption

You can apply if it’s not reasonable or practical for you to use computers, software or the internet to follow the rules for Making Tax Digital for VAT.

This could be because:

  • of your age, a disability or where you live
  • you object to using computers on religious grounds
  • of any other reason why it’s not reasonable or practical

HMRC will consider each application on a case by case basis.

Apply

To apply, call or write to HMRC. You’ll need:

  • your VAT registration number
  • your business name and address
  • details of how you currently file your VAT Return
  • the reason you think you’re exempt from Making Tax Digital
  • authorisation from the business (if you’re applying on someone’s behalf)

You’ll get a letter with HMRC’s decision. Until then, continue filing VAT Returns the way you usually do.

Opt out

You can opt out if you’ve signed up for Making Tax Digital for VAT voluntarily and your taxable turnover has not gone above £85,000 since you signed up.

You’ll be opted out from your next return period. This means you must:

  • continue to keep digital records until your next return period
  • submit your next return using software that’s compatible with Making Tax Digital

Sign in to your VAT online account to:

  • opt out of Making Tax Digital for VAT
  • send VAT Returns starting from your next return period after opting out

You must wait 48 hours after opting out before you send a VAT Return.

Published 7 January 2020