Guidance

Keep digital records for Making Tax Digital for VAT

What records you need to keep digitally for Making Tax Digital for VAT and how to keep them.

Most VAT registered businesses with a taxable turnover above £85,000 must follow the rules for Making Tax Digital for VAT.

For Making Tax Digital for VAT, you keep the same records as any VAT registered business, but you need to keep some of them digitally.

Records you must keep digitally

The records you need to keep digitally for Making Tax Digital for VAT are:

  • business name and contact details
  • VAT number and details of any schemes used
  • VAT on supplies made and received
  • adjustments to returns
  • time of supply (tax point)
  • rate of VAT charged on supplies made
  • reverse charge transactions - if your software does not record them, you need to record them twice as a supply made and a supply received
  • daily gross takings (DGT) if you use a retail scheme
  • purchases of assets you can reclaim tax on if you use the Flat Rate Scheme
  • value of sales made and total output tax on purchases under Gold Accounting Scheme (if applicable)
  • documents that cover multiple supplies made or received on behalf of your business by:
    • volunteers for charity fundraising
    • a third party business
    • employees for business expenses in petty cash

How to keep records digitally

You can use either:

  • a compatible software package that allows you to keep records and submit VAT Returns
  • other software (like spreadsheets) that uses bridging software to connect to HMRC systems

Find compatible software or bridging software.

If you use more than one software package to keep records and submit returns, you need to link them.

Linking software

Some ways you can link your software include:

  • using formulas to link cells in spreadsheets
  • emailing records
  • putting records on a portable device to give to your agent
  • importing and exporting XML and CSV files
  • downloading and uploading files

You must have links between the software you use by 31 March 2020, unless HMRC sent you a letter to tell you that you’re in the deferral group.

If you’re in the deferral group, you must have links between the software you use by 30 September 2020.

Published 28 March 2019
Last updated 21 June 2019 + show all updates
  1. Added translation
  2. First published.