On the 9th January 2013, HMRC announced:
As many as 50,000 businesses that have failed to submit VAT returns will be targeted by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) this month with warnings that their tax affairs will be closely scrutinised.
More than 600,000 businesses have to put in VAT returns each month and most do so on time. But in a new campaign some 50,000 will be warned that, from 28 February, their tax affairs will attract greater attention.
Marian Wilson, Head of HMRC Campaigns, said:
“After 28 February, if they have not submitted their outstanding VAT returns and paid what they owe, HMRC will use its legal powers to pursue outstanding returns and any VAT that is unpaid. Penalties, or even criminal investigation, could follow. “
Do you have a ‘reasonable excuse’?
HMRC have a flowchart so you can see if your excuse qualifies (but its pretty unlikely!)
If you can’t pay your VAT…
You need to contact HMRC’s Payment Support Service on Tel 0845 302 1435 – this service is available for individuals and businesses who have not yet received a payment demand.
Opening hours are Monday to Friday 8.00 am to 8.00 pm, Saturday and Sunday 8.00 am to 4.00 pm, excluding bank holidays.
Or you could get a loan…
The earlier you ask for a loan the better, lenders don’t like last minute requests as they will need to do credit checks etc before the loan can be approved. But there are lenders prepared to lend for VAT and other tax bills, as an example, here is a link to Lease Direct Finance/Investec who offer VAT funding http://www.ldf.co.uk/professions/Literature/vat.pdf
Don’t give the tax man a reason to closely scrutinised your business.