From mid-November 2023 businesses will no longer be able to access the paper VAT registration form online and will have to either register online or call HMRC to request a form.

The majority of businesses now Register for VAT online, however, the VAT1 paper form has to date been readily accessible on the website. HMRC are removing this access from the middle of November 2023 and businesses who are exempt from online registration, or who can only register using a paper form, will now have to call the HMRC VAT helpline to request a form.

This is likely to apply to:

  • Those who are exempt from online registration due to age, disability, where they live, because they object to using computers for religious reasons or where online registration is not reasonable or practical.
  • Businesses applying for a ‘registration exception’ because their taxable turnover has only exceeded the registration threshold temporarily and they expect it to drop back below the limit within 12 months.
  • Businesses who are joining the Agricultural flat rate scheme
  • Overseas partnerships. 
  • Entities (other than UK partnerships or non-established taxable persons) who do not have a UTR. 

HMRC are working on allowing such businesses (other than those who are exempt) to register online at which time they will no longer be able to use the paper form.

Useful guides on this topic

Making Tax Digital for VAT: who is digitally excluded?
Who can claim exemption from Making Tax Digital for VAT?  What are the issues?

Registering for VAT
When should a business register for and charge VAT? What are the VAT registration thresholds? What penalties might HMRC issue for late notification of registration? When do you need to file a VAT return?

Filing paper VAT returns
Who can file a paper VAT return? What is the process?

When do I have to deregister for VAT? When can I voluntarily deregister? What penalties might HMRC issue if I am late notifying them of mandatory deregistration?

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