Guidance

Pay VAT deferred due to coronavirus (COVID-19)

Find out how to pay VAT payments deferred between 20 March and 30 June 2020. You can pay now or get ready to opt in to the VAT deferral new payment scheme.

If you deferred VAT between 20 March and 30 June 2020 and still have payments to make, you can:

  • pay the deferred VAT in full on or before 31 March 2021
  • opt in to the VAT deferral new payment scheme when it launches in 2021
  • contact HMRC if you need more help to pay

Pay your deferred VAT

You can pay your deferred VAT in full by 31 March 2021.

You do not need to contact HMRC.

If you want to opt in to the new payment scheme

You cannot opt in yet. The online opt in process will be available in early 2021. You must opt in yourself, your agent cannot do this for you.

Instead of paying the full amount by the end of March 2021, you can make up to 11 smaller monthly instalments, interest free. All instalments must be paid by the end of March 2022.

The scheme will allow you to:

  • pay your deferred VAT in instalments without adding interest
  • select the number of instalments from 2 to 11 equal monthly payments

To use this scheme you must:

  • still have deferred VAT to pay
  • be up to date with your VAT returns
  • be able to pay the deferred VAT by Direct Debit

If you opt in to the scheme, you can still have a time to pay arrangement for other HMRC debts and outstanding tax.

Get ready to opt in to the new payment scheme

Before opting in you must:

  • create your own Government Gateway account if you don’t already have one
  • submit any outstanding VAT returns from the last 4 years. You will not be able to join the scheme if you have not done so
  • correct errors on your VAT returns as soon as possible. Corrections received after 31 December 2020 may not show in your deferred VAT balance
  • make sure you know how much you owe, including the amount you originally deferred and how much you may have already paid

You should also:

  • pay what you can as soon as possible to allow us to show the correct deferred VAT balance
  • consider the number of equal instalments you’ll need, from 2 to 11 months

If you are not able to pay your deferred VAT

If you are still unable to pay and need more time, find out what to do if you cannot pay your tax bill on time. 

For advice and information on other support available use the get help and support for your business guide.

Published 26 March 2020
Last updated 20 November 2020 + show all updates
  1. New payment scheme will be available in 2021. Guide updated with information on how to opt in to the scheme.

  2. Announcement by the Chancellor on 24 September 2020 about the option to pay smaller VAT payments over a longer period of time has been added to the page.

  3. Information about the VAT payments deferral scheme ending on 30 June 2020 has been added.

  4. Information regarding the ending of the VAT deferral period added

  5. Added translation

  6. HMRC's digital assistant link has been added to the 'get help' section.

  7. Updated details about how which VAT payments can be deferred including payments on account and monthly and quarterly payments.

  8. Welsh translation added.

  9. Information about deferring VAT payments because of coronavirus (COVID-19) has been updated to clarify that import VAT payments are not included.

  10. First published.