VAT Returns

To calculate VAT return and submit to HMRC via MTD (Making Tax Digital)

Luke Mayo avatar
Written by Luke Mayo
Updated over a week ago

Once your bookkeeping transactions are up to date and correct, up to and including your VAT period end, you can then create the VAT return in Farmplan Business Cloud.

To do this, go to Reports > VAT Returns.

Click 'Add New VAT Return' and enter the dates for the VAT period. If it's your first return since registering, this period could be a long or short one, any subsequent periods will normally be monthly or quarterly as determined in Company Settings – Financial Info. Farmplan Business Cloud will auto populate these dates going forward

Click 'Create VAT Return'.

NB if you are re-visiting a VAT return that has already been created do not forget to ‘Calculate’ to refresh the screen which will ensure that the most up to date figures are included on the VAT return.

Your VAT return will then be calculated. You can see the VAT you charged to customers and the VAT you were charged from suppliers, with the difference being due to HMRC (box 5). The return also shows the total value of sales and the total value of purchases.

You can drill down into the figures of box 1 and 4 by clicking on the magnifying glass icon.

If you are happy that the figures are accurate, you can click 'Save & Lock'. This will prevent any transactions included in the VAT return calculation from being edited. This is important as it avoids potential discrepancies.

Once your return is locked you will see options to export the return to Excel or PDF.

This gives a full breakdown of the VAT return calculation and is useful for checking that everything included is correct.

If you find errors you can unlock the return, make corrections and then lock it again providing the figures have not been submitted to HMRC.

The box 5 figure (amount owed to/from HMRC) will now be in the correct category. When completing your banking, please categorise your VAT payment to the 'VAT Owed to HMRC' category.

Transactions not included in the VAT return

When your VAT return report is exported to Excel or PDF, there could be a section for transactions that are not included in the VAT return. These would be entries that are dated to fall within this current period, however they might not be included for a few different reasons, such as:

  • They have been coded with a VAT status of non-vatable (NV) and therefore fall outside the scope of VAT (drawings, bank transfers, loan repayments etc.)

  • It is a Supplier Payment or customer receipt (when the business VAT calculation is 'Invoiced based') - these entries are not included in the VAT return as the VAT is taken from the invoice and invoice date, and therefore the payment of the invoice is not included.

  • If it is a Supplier or Customer invoice (when the business VAT calculation is 'Cash based') - these entries are not included in the VAT return as the VAT information is taken from the invoice but at the point at which it is paid, therefore the payment entry is affecting the VAT return but the invoice is not included.

For example, using a business with an 'Invoice basis' VAT calculation:

The Supplier Invoice is included in the VAT return:

The payment of that invoice is not included in the VAT return:

Submit to HMRC

Farmplan Business Cloud is listed as a recognised software supplier supporting Making Tax Digital for VAT. This means that any VAT returns you submit after 1st April 2019 will be fully MTD compliant.

After you have run your VAT return and chosen to 'Save & Lock' it, the option to submit to HMRC will become available, as shown below:

The first time that you do this you will be presented with this screen:

From here you will need to Authorise MTD - to allow Farmplan Business Cloud to submit VAT returns to HMRC.

After clicking 'Authorise MTD' you will need to follow the instructions provided by HMRC to grant this permission.

From here you will be prompted to enter your Government Gateway User ID and Password to complete your submission.

After granting permission to Farmplan you will be able to submit your MTD compliant VAT returns by clicking 'Submit To HMRC'.

Viewing your completed VAT returns

You can view/edit/export all previously submitted VAT returns by going back to Reports > VAT Returns.

Unable to submit a VAT return to HMRC

If you have previously submitted VAT returns within Farmplan Business Cloud, or have authorised the system to interact with HMRC to enable you to submit your VAT returns, there could still be reasons why your VAT returns fails to submit. The main reasons would be:

  1. HMRC MTD service and availability - if the service down for planned or unplanned reasons, this can be checked here.

  2. It's been 18 months since you have authorised the system to submit VAT returns. See 'Re-authorise MTD' at the bottom of this article for more

Unauthorise HMRC

If, for any reason you need to revoke the ‘Grant Authority’ for Farmplan to link to HMRC you will be given a button at the bottom of this screen to ‘Unauthorise MTD’.

Re-authorise MTD

Authority for Farmplan Business Cloud to interact with HMRC lasts 18 months, and once this expires you are required to re-authorise and give permission for Farmplan Business Cloud to continue submitting MTD VAT returns.
Within the VAT returns section, once you have reached this expiry date then the 'Unauthorise MTD' button will change to a 'Reauthorise MTD' button to enable you to re-link to HMRC.

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