Guidance

Submit a return and pay the Soft Drinks Industry Levy (notice 2)

Find out what you need to include on a Soft Drinks Industry Levy return, how to correct a previous return and how to pay the levy.

If you’re a packager of drinks that are liable for the Soft Drinks Industry Levy, or you need to report drinks that have been brought into the UK, you’ll need to send a return to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) every quarter and pay any levy due.

The returns will be for fixed reporting periods ending June, September, December and March. You must submit the returns and pay any levy due within 30 days of the end of each reporting period.

If you’re registered for the levy and have nothing to report for a period, you should submit a nil return, unless you’re only registered as a small producer.

How to submit a return

Under regulation 22 of the Soft Drinks Industry Levy Regulations 2018, this section has force of law from 6 April 2018.

You need to be registered for the levy before you can submit a return.

Returns can only be submitted once the accounting period you’re reporting on is over.

You must submit returns through the online service, which will be available from July 2018.

What to include on the return

Under regulation 22 of the Soft Drinks Industry Levy Regulations 2018, this section has force of law from 6 April 2018.

On your return, you must include how many litres of liable drinks you need to report in that reporting period. You must also include how many litres of liable drinks were:

  • packaged for yourself or someone else (not including amounts packaged for small producers)
  • packaged for each small producer, including their Soft Drinks Industry Levy registration number
  • brought into the UK (not including those produced by small producers)
  • brought into the UK from small producers

You must also include how many litres of liable drinks that you’ve paid the levy on, or that you’re reporting in the current return, and are eligible for levy credit because they were:

  • exported, or are expected to be exported
  • lost or destroyed

You’ll need to report drinks that are liable for each levy band separately on your return.

Pay the levy

You’ll be able to pay the levy online from July 2018.

When you use the online service to submit your return, you can work out how much you have to pay.

You must submit your returns and pay any levy due within 30 days of the end of each reporting period.

If you’re claiming a levy credit, and the amount is more than what you owe in a reporting period, it may result in a net credit. You won’t automatically get a repayment for this credit. It’ll be carried over to the next reporting period and will reduce the amount you’ll need to pay for that period.

If you believe you won’t have to report and pay for any more drinks in the future, you can send a request to HMRC to cancel your registration for the levy. You can then claim any net credit due. You’ll be able to do this online from May 2018.

Ways to pay

Under regulations 20(3) and 22 of the Soft Drinks Industry Levy Regulations 2018, this section has force of law from 6 April 2018.

You must pay the levy through the online service by either Bacs (Bankers Automated Clearing System) or CHAPS (Clearing House Automated Payment System). You’ll be able to do this from July 2018.

Records you need to keep

For each reporting period, you must get and keep records of:

  • the amount of litres of liable drinks in each levy band
  • the amount of levy you need to pay
  • liable drinks that you need to report but you’ll claim a levy credit for, and how any levy credits were calculated
  • any adjustments or corrections made for previous returns, including which reporting period the return was for and the amount you need to pay as a result

For each delivery of liable drinks to all premises where you store liable drinks (including registered warehouses), you must get and keep records that show:

  • whether the premises have been nominated as a registered warehouse with HMRC
  • the amount delivered, in litres
  • the date of delivery
  • the date that they were removed from the premises
  • details of who:
    • made the delivery
    • transported the drinks from the premises

If you’re a packager of liable drinks, you must get and keep records for each reporting period of:

  • how many litres of liable drinks were produced by small producers
  • the amount of litres of liable drinks that were first either:

You must keep all records for 6 years, starting from the last day of the Soft Drinks Industry Levy reporting period that the records are for.

Correct an error in a previous return

Under regulation 22 of the Soft Drinks Industry Levy Regulations 2018, this section has force of law from 6 April 2018.

If you’ve submitted a return with incorrect information, you must correct it using the online service or notify HMRC.

You can use your current return to correct a previous one if the correct amount you need to pay or claim back is either:

  • no more than a net amount of £10,000
  • between a net amount of £10,000 and £50,000, and doesn’t exceed 1% of the net amount you need to pay for the current return period

You’ll need to notify HMRC if the net amount you have to pay because of an incorrect return is either:

  • greater than £50,000
  • between £10,000 and £50,000 and exceeds 1% of the net amount you need to pay for the current return period

More information about how to correct returns will be available from July 2018.

Published 3 April 2018