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HMRC internal manual

VAT Refunds Manual

Who is entitled to claim: divisional registrations

Where a division of a company that is registered for VAT in the names of its divisions makes

  • an over-declaration of output tax, or
  • an under-claim of input tax

the claim should be made by the division that made the over-declaration or under-claim. That is because the VAT account that is in error is that of the division in question.

If the divisional registration is cancelled and the company is once again registered for VAT under a single number, over-declarations and under-claims made by any divisions that were previously separately registered and now form part of the single registration can be claimed by the company.

Where an over-declaration is made by a company that was previously registered for VAT under a single number and is now registered in the names of its divisions, the claim should be made by the division which has taken over the VAT registration number held by the ‘single company’ before it registered in the names of its divisions or by the headquarters division.

For example:

Alufa Ltd is registered for VAT under VAT registration number 123 4567 89. On 23 April 2016 it applies for permission to be registered in the names of its divisions and that application is given effect from 1 July 2016.

It is now registered as Binyamina Division of Afula Ltd, Carmel Division of Afula Ltd, Dalia Division of Afula Ltd and Eretz Division of Afula Ltd. Binyamina Division took over the VAT registration number previously held by Afula Ltd in its single registration and the other divisions were given new VAT registration numbers.

When the company tax manager discovers on 24 October 2016 that the company had over-declared its output tax liability on the sale of E-Type Widgets between 1 October 2012 and the current date he puts in a claim. The claim for the accounting periods ending before 1 July 2016, should preferably be made by Binyamina Division. For the subsequent accounting periods, the claims should be made by the individual divisions that made the over-declarations in question.

Similarly, where input tax is under-claimed by a company that was previously registered for VAT under a single number and is now registered in the names of its divisions, the claim should be made by the division bearing the VAT registration number of the company before it registered in the names of its divisions - this is based on the assumption that, as is normally the case, when a company which is already registered for VAT registers in the names of its divisions, the VAT number is transferred from the existing VAT registration number to one of the divisions using Form VAT68.

For example:

Alufa Ltd is registered for VAT under VAT registration number 123 4567 89. On 23 April 2016 it applies for permission to be registered in the names of its divisions and that application is given effect from 1 July 2016. It is now registered as Binyamina Division of Afula Ltd, Carmel Division of Afula Ltd, Dalia Division of Afula Ltd and Eretz Division of Afula Ltd. Binyamina Division took over the VAT registration number previously held by Afula Ltd in its single registration and the other divisions were given new VAT registration numbers.

When the company tax manager discovers on 24 October 2016 that the company had understated its input tax entitlement on the staff entertainment between 1 October 2012 and the current date he puts in a claim. The claim for the accounting periods ending before 1 July 2016, should preferably be made by Binyamina Division. For the subsequent accounting periods, the claims should be made by the individual divisions that incurred the input tax in question.