Businesses with ex-VAT turnovers of £100k or more must now file their VAT returns online and pay the bill electronically. This comes at the same time as similar changes to the PAYE system.
All VAT returns for accounting periods starting April 1 2010 must be filed online.
HMRC is writing to all employers this month to remind them that, from this year, Employer Annual Returns must also be filed online by May 19. There is no longer a paper filing option for small employers with fewer than 50 staff.
Also from May 2010, HMRC is introducing new penalties for late payment of PAYE – this includes Income Tax, National Insurance Contributions (NICs), student loan deductions and Construction Industry Scheme deductions.
To file online, employers must register with HMRC’s PAYE Online service – www.hmrc.gov.uk/paye and clicking ‘Register for PAYE Online’.
Smaller employers can then use HMRC’s own free software to file their employee data securely online, while larger employers can purchase a range of commercial software. Alternatively, an intermediary can file on an employer’s behalf.
Further help on employer filing is available from the HMRC website at www.hmrc.gov.uk/paye or from HMRC’s Employer CD-ROM, which is being sent to all employers.
HMRC has also set out all of the changes in a ‘Super Podcast’ which explains the changes in full, and what businesses need to do in order to comply. You can listen to the Podcast here: