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ICAEW applauds MTD pilot extension

With only 3,500 businesses currently participating in HMRC’s MTD for VAT pilot, ICAEW welcomes the move to extend the pilot wider to all businesses that will come under MTD in April 2019.

February 2019

The way that businesses submit their VAT returns is changing. From 1 April 2019, VAT-registered businesses with income over the VAT threshold (£85,000) will be required to maintain their accounting records using software and to file their VAT returns directly from that software.

In advance of mandation, eligible businesses are being encouraged to join the pilot and HMRC has announced that this is now open to all businesses who will have to use MTD from April.

Paul Aplin, ICAEW President, says: “Some businesses, such as companies which are members of a group, will not be required to use the new service until October. We are pleased that from today, the pilot is also extended to VAT groups, which will give them longer to adapt to the new processes.

“We remain concerned at the overall lack of awareness about MTD for VAT. ICAEW member firms have been encouraging businesses to prepare and to look at the potential digital technology holds more generally for some time, but the deadline is now looming. We are concerned that many businesses are still unaware of what they will be required to do.

“There are currently only 3,500 participants in the pilot and that will need to increase substantially over the next few weeks to ensure that the system is fully tested and that businesses become familiar with the new process. Through at least the first year of MTD, HMRC should adopt a very light touch – one of encouragement rather than compulsion.”

Further information can be found at www.icaew.com/mtd 

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