Do I Need to Register for VAT?

If the taxable turnover of your business goes over the threshold, you need to register for Value Added Tax, also known as VAT. 

You can only charge VAT if you’re registered, so make sure you register within 30 days of going over the threshold. If you’re late registering, you’ll have to pay the VAT you owe, and a penalty may be charged. 

So, what is taxable turnover? It’s the total value of everything you sell which isn’t VAT exempt, or where VAT doesn’t apply. You can find out more about taxable turnover on GOV.UK. 

There are other reasons why you need to register. For example, if your business is based outside the UK but you sell goods or services in the UK, the threshold doesn’t apply to you. So, you need to register straight away. 

If you’re taking over a business which is already, or should be, paying VAT you’ll need to register. 

You can also register voluntarily even if the turnover of your business is below the threshold, but you’ll need to keep accounts and file returns to HMRC. 

You should check your taxable turnover regularly to see if you’ve gone over the threshold in the last 12 months or if you expect to in the next 30 days.  

When you’re VAT registered, you’ll need to keep digital records, and use Making Tax Digital compatible software.  

You can find more information about registering for VAT and Making Tax Digital on GOV.UK.