HMRC internal manual

VAT Agricultural Flat Rate Scheme

VATAFRS2500 - Appendices: How to verify the validity of a certificate number

VATAFRS0265 explains the context of this page.

1. Background When the scheme was originally started farmers were issued with a flat rate certificate number unique to the AFRS. In 2003, to enable the AFRS members to be recorded on DTR, the certificates numbers were taken from the 96x.xxxx.xx series of ‘VAT’ numbers and since then all new applicants have received their numbers in the format. As we become aware of farmers still using the old series, these are being reissued from the ‘96x’ series.

2. How to check an ‘old’ certificate number A certificate number consisted of 6 digits preceded by 2 check digits, eg 08 123502. Valid check digits are 00-10. Any check digits outside this range indicate an invalid number.

If the check digits are within the range 00-10, the number may be verified by a simple “modulus 11” check. The example below shows you how to carry out the check.

Example calculation

Certificate Number   8 - 1 2 3 5   2
Multiply By     7 6 5 4 3 2
Answers     7 12 15 20   4
Add answers together = 58
Add check digits + 8
Final Total = 66

The final total must be exactly divisible by 11 with no remainder. If it is not, the number is invalid.

3. How to check a ‘new’ certificate number The ‘new’ AFRS number is in the same format as a VAT registration number; these can be verified using the “modulus 97” check.

4. DTR, VISION, VIES, EF The new AFRS number is recorded on DTR and the details can be accessed as normal. The numbers series used is also used for other non-VAT purposes and the fact that it is a AFRS registration is recorded under the heading REVENUE INTEREST.

AFRS numbers should not be found on VISION or VIES.

An Electronic folder will exist for all ‘new’ certificated farmers.