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HMRC internal manual

VAT Default Surcharge Officer's Guide


This guidance is to supplement VAT Notice 700/50: default surcharge.

Taxpayers registered for VAT are required by law to file returns and to ensure that payment of any VAT due has cleared to HMRC’s bank account by the due date.

If a taxpayer fails to file their return or their payment fails to clear to HMRCs bank account by the due date they will be ‘in default’ and may have to pay a surcharge. A surcharge is an additional amount a taxpayer is required to pay if they don’t pay their return on time.

There are no implications under the Human Rights Act for VAT default surcharge, see VCP10160.

The law relating to default surcharge is in Sections 59, 59A, 59B, 71, 76, 77 and 83 of the VAT Act 1994.

Where to go for advice

Technical advice and guidance on default surcharge is provided by the Tax Administration, Litigation and Advice (TALA) team. (This content has been withheld because of exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act 2000)