A summary of VAT news this October:

HMRC is updating its VAT online service (the changes will go through in November) ahead of compulsory online filing on 1 April 2010...more

Tax Geek guides:
How to register for VAT online (agents)
How to register for VAT online (taxpayers)

VAT Business Briefs:

VAT on postal services

Some of the Royal Mail’s postal services will soon become vatable following a legal challenge in the European Court of Justice.

HM Revenue & Customs are currently in discussions with Royal Mail to establish precisely which of their services will be affected and further guidance will be issued once these discussions are complete. Any changes will be implemented from a future date and, in the meantime, all postal services provided by Royal Mail remain exempt from VAT.
Source: Revenue & Customs Brief 64/09

VAT: Partial exemption – VAT deduction by theatres on production costs

HMRC has revised its policy on input tax recovery on the costs of staging shows (production costs) for which the theatre’s admissions are VAT exempt. It follows the Tribunal decision in Garsington Opera Limited.Source: Revenue & Customs Brief 65/09

Anti-avoidance: relocation of telecoms & internet businesses to avoid UK VAT

Telecommunication service providers, internet service providers and broadcasters have been moving their businesses to jurisdictions with lower VAT rates. HMRC says that it will carefully examine all such arrangements. Where it considers that there are sufficient human and technical resources in the UK to form a fixed establishment from which the services are supplied, or where the entity purporting to make the supplies does not have a sufficient presence in the other Member State to be established there, HMRC will mount a robust challenge.
Source: Revenue & Customs Brief 58/09