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0300 200 3700

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VAT is a type of sales tax added to the sale of certain items in the UK. If you wish to get assistance with or find out more about VAT, call the VAT Helpline on this number.

Other Contact Numbers for VAT

Department Opening Hours
Head Office Monday-Friday
HMRC VAT Monday-Friday
Calculator Monday-Friday
Registration Monday-Friday
Threshold Monday-Friday
Return Monday-Friday
Exemption Monday-Friday
VAT schemes Monday-Friday

VAT Head Office

VAT was first introduced by the UK Government in 1973. Since then, it has risen in importance to become the third most prominent source of Government revenue, behind income tax and national insurance. If you wish to find out more information about VAT, call the head office helpline.


To charge VAT, your business needs to be registered for it. VAT is a type of tax charged on goods/services, selling assets, commission, hiring goods, items which have been sold to staff, and on-sales e.g. part exchanges and gifts. Once you have registered as a business, you’ll need to charge VAT on the above products/services and reclaim any VAT you have paid on services/goods which relate to your business. You’ll also need to submit a VAT return to HMRC every three months. For help or information please call the helpline.

VAT Calculator

Whilst the Government does not provide an official VAT calculator, there are plenty available online. Try this one from It allows you to use a slider to change the rate of VAT so that you can effectively work out your calculations. You can find information about the current VAT rates on the Government website- the rates vary depending on what is being sold and who is buying them. If you need help calculating VAT please call the number.

VAT Registration

If your business has a VAT taxable turnover of over £83,000, you will be required to register for VAT. Once you have registered, you will be sent a certificate with your VAT number on and details of when to send your first VAT return. You also have the option to register voluntarily if you have a turnover of less than £83,000. You can’t charge VAT until you receive your number, but you must still pay VAT to HMRC. You can register for VAT online via the Government website. Alternatively, you could hire an accountant to manage your VAT dealings on your behalf. You should get your certificate with your VAT number on within 14 days- it’s sent to either your online account or via post if you didn’t register online or your accountant registered on your behalf. To register, you will need to provide information about your business activity and your turnover. You will also need to give your bank details. Note that you need to register within 30 days of your business reaching the £83,000 threshold. If you fail to, you could be charged a late registration penalty by HMRC. For more information about VAT registration please call on the phone.

VAT Threshold

The VAT threshold is currently £83,000- if your turnover is that amount, or over that, you’ll need to register for VAT following the above steps. The threshold for businesses based overseas which sell into the UK is £70,000. If you’re bringing goods into the UK from the EU, the threshold is the same as a UK business at £83,000. To find out more about VAT thresholds please call the helpline.

VAT Return

Every three months, businesses are required to submit VAT returns to HMRC. The timeframe is known as your accounting period. You’ll need to record information such as total sales/purchases, how much VAT you owe, how much VAT you can claim back and the refund amount from HMRC. Even if you don’t have any VAT to pay/reclaim, you’ll still need to provide HMRC with a VAT return. If you have an online VAT account, you can sign up to get email alerts when your return is due to be submitted. A return is completed and submitted online and there is plenty of guidance to help with filling it out. If you’re reclaiming VAT, ensure that you have kept records to show that the VAT was paid. You can’t reclaim VAT for entertainment expenses.

If you are unable to provide confirmed figures on your VAT return for any reason, you need to ask permission from HMRC regarding the use of estimated figures, with a reason as to why you can’t provide the accurate figures.

You can check when your VAT returns are due using your online account. The deadline for payment is usually a month and seven days after the end of the three-month period.

You should pay your VAT by Direct Debit or by using your bank’s online banking service. If you can’t pay this way, contact HMRC.

VAT Exemption

VAT isn’t charged on the following products/services, so if your business sells only these, you won’t need to pay VAT:

  • Finance, credit and insurance
  • Training and education
  • Charity fundraising events
  • Membership organisation subscriptions
  • Selling/letting/leasing commercial land or buildings.

If you sell a mixture of taxable and exempt supplies, keep a record of your sales that are exempt as well as information about how you have worked out the amount of VAT that you need to reclaim. You can opt to charge VAT on the sale/letting/leasing of commercial buildings/land if you wish to. If you opt for this, you should charge VAT at the standard rate. For more information and help with VAT exemption please call the number.

VAT Schemes

There are several VAT schemes available, including a flat rate scheme. A flat rate scheme means you pay a flat rate of VAT across all sales and purchases. This scheme is usually beneficial to businesses with a small turnover and a small number of sales which they are liable to pay VAT on. If you are unsure about a VAT scheme, seek financial advice from HMRC on their helpline or an accountant.

VAT Head Office Address

Department Address
Head Office 100 Parliament St, London, SW1A 2BQ