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HMRC internal manual

VAT Deregistration

Suspension of taxable supplies

If a trader suspends making taxable supplies, we should allow the registration to continue if the suspension is clearly of a short duration. For example, if the suspension is the result of illness, we should allow the registration to continue if we are satisfied that the trader will resume the business. Also to bear in mind is that the nature of some businesses is such that, even in normal circumstances, there may be a considerable time between taxable supplies. We should take particular care when considering the activities of such businesses.

When a trader indefinitely suspends making taxable supplies for reasons other than insolvency, death or incapacity, the registration should be cancelled under the compulsory registration provisions on the grounds that the trader has ceased making taxable supplies.

If the trader maintains that they intend to resume making taxable supplies (whether in the same or another type of activity), the registration may be allowed to continue. We must be satisfied, however, that the trader meets the intending trader registration requirements of VATREG21000.Please note that the suspension provisions are distinct from the deferment of cancellation procedure outlined in VATDREG13000.