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New VAT services available online


Published: 09 Aug 2022 Update History

HMRC launches new VAT registration service for agents and an online error correction service.

The new VAT registration service was rolled out to agents on 1 August.

Some members have encountered an issue where a staff member completing the form is being asked to verify their identity. These questions are not supposed to be part of the service, but can appear if the service is not accessed in the ‘correct’ way.

To access the new VRS service ‘correctly’, agents should use the link available at VAT: registration applications, exceptions and changes or Register for VAT: How to register for VAT. Agents must ensure they use their agent services account credentials. 

Registering through this route should mean the staff member will be asked to provide their name and phone number only. No other ID questions, such as date of birth and national insurance number, should be asked. The name and address are requested only for the purposes of any follow up questions on the application and do not become a permanent part of the record.

Agents should not use the VAT registration service available from the agent online services portal or the HMRC services: sign in or register page.

HMRC has shared a briefing note for agents that contains screenshots of the pages that agents will see when using their agent services account credentials.

HMRC has also shared an FAQ document relating to the new VRS for agents. The document answers some questions and confirms that HMRC are investigating other concerns.

ICAEW’s Tax Faculty would appreciate feedback on the new service. If you have any comments, please contact caroline.miskin@icaew.com or ed.saltmarsh@icaew.com.

Online error correction service

HMRC launched an online error correction service on 8 August 2022. The new service can be accessed at: Tell HMRC about any errors in your VAT Return.

To use the service, businesses will need to sign in using an email address or government gateway details. Please note that if signing in by email, a security code will be sent to the email address provided.

Once signed in, you can add details of the error(s) on-screen before the form is submitted directly to HMRC. Once submitted, the business will receive a notification and a unique reference number.

For businesses unable to use the online service, there is a separate printable form. This form is also completed on-screen, but it can be printed and posted to the following address:

HM Revenue and Customs 

The printable form can also be emailed to inbox.btcnevaterrorcorrection@hmrc.gov.uk.

No confirmation of receipt will be provided for error correction notices emailed or posted to HMRC.

Please note that net errors under £10,000, or under £50,000 if less than 1% of the box 6 figure of the VAT return on which the error is being corrected, can still be corrected in the next VAT return. However, this is not considered a disclosure of the error for the purpose of mitigating penalties. Businesses should therefore consider when it is appropriate to separately notify HMRC of an error when it is corrected in the VAT return.

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