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HMRC internal manual

Debt Management and Banking Manual

Debt and return pursuit: VAT: National Debt Pursuit Unit and payment on account: payment on account regime

All businesses that have:

  • a total VAT liability of £2.3 million or more in a period of 12 months or less
  • tax periods exceeding one month

are required to comply with the terms of Payment On Account (POA) and pay advance instalments of their VAT return liability.

Further information on POA is contained in the VAT Payments on account regime (VPOA) manual.

POA businesses can be identified by review codes 442 and 443 set on the R1 screen on VISION.

Although the Large Business Unit part of the National Debt Pursuit Unit manages any debts, it is the POA Team (in Banking Operations, Regian House, Liverpool) who administer POA, and any queries regarding the operation of the regime are dealt with by them. They are responsible for notifying businesses of their requirement to follow the POA rules and monitor the payment of instalments. They can be contacted:

  • by taxpayers either:

    • at the email address <lputeam{qd}> 
    • by phone on 03000 540 109
  • internally by post in EF to POA Banking 443.

The POA Banking team will proactively monitor the VAT returns and payment compliance.

If a VAT return is not received, they will contact the trader to establish the reason for the delay. If this does not prompt payment, they will refer it to the LBU.

The POA Banking team issues central assessments. These will be notified to NDPU on the enforcement run if payment is not received.

If a POA instalment or the balancing payment has not cleared HMRC’s bank account by the due date, the business will be subject to default surcharge action.

The POA Banking team manually issue all default surcharges for traders in the regime and so are responsible for recording, amending and cancelling defaults for POA traders.