A Complete Range of Accountancy Services to Help You Grow Your Business 
Vat returns stevenage
Learn the latest from Hammond Barr on the Flat Rate Scheme for VAT, including its benefits, eligibility criteria, and implications. 

Overview of the Flat Rate Scheme for VAT 

The Flat Rate Scheme (FRS) for Value Added Tax (VAT) is a simplified system designed to help small businesses manage their VAT payments to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC). Instead of tracking the VAT on each purchase and sale, companies under the VAT Flat Rate Scheme pay a fixed rate percentage of their VAT-inclusive income to HMRC. 
This scheme offers several benefits to participating businesses. Firstly, it reduces the administrative burden of keeping detailed VAT records, saving time and effort for small business owners. Secondly, it can offer potential cost savings. Businesses can keep the difference between what they charge their customers in VAT and what they pay to HMRC, which can result in financial gains.  
Guidance on the FRS and other VAT matters can be obtained from Hammond Barr, a Hertfordshire-based accountancy firm offering comprehensive accountancy services. 

Understanding the Flat Rate Scheme 

The FRS allows businesses to pay VAT based on a flat rate percentage of their VAT-inclusive income, removing the need to keep detailed input tax records. This simplifies record-keeping and can result in potential financial savings for businesses. However, companies cannot usually reclaim VAT on purchases under the FRS, except for specific capital assets over £2,000. 
Navigating the complexities of the FRS can be challenging, but businesses do not have to face these challenges alone. Hammond Barr has a team of AAT-qualified technicians who can guide and support businesses, helping them effectively navigate the FRS. 

Eligibility and Application Process for the Flat Rate Scheme 

To join the FRS, a business's VAT turnover - the total value of everything sold that isn't exempt from VAT - must be £150,000 or less. Companies meeting this criterion can apply to HMRC to join the FRS.  
The application process can be complex, so having expert assistance can be invaluable. 
Hammond Barr offers support to businesses throughout the application process, providing guidance on eligibility criteria and helping to ensure that all necessary information is accurately provided to HMRC. Helpful info is also available in our FAQ

The Limited Cost Trader Category and Implications 

Introduced on 1 April 2017, the Limited Cost Trader (LCT) category affects businesses that spend a small amount on goods.  
Businesses in this category must use a flat rate of 16.5%. Businesses can determine if they fall into the LCT category at the end of each quarter by analysing their total purchases. 
This could have significant implications for businesses regularly falling into the LCT category. It may be more cost-effective for such firms to transition to standard VAT accounting. Hammond Barr can assist businesses in understanding their LCT status and managing any potential implications. 

Input Tax and Relevant Goods under the Flat Rate Scheme 

Although the FRS generally precludes businesses from reclaiming VAT on purchases, there are exceptions for certain capital assets over £2,000, including VAT. Relevant goods for claiming input tax under the FRS can include stationery, office supplies, and fuel for a taxi. 
However, it's important to note that certain goods are excluded from the FRS according to HMRC's VAT Notice 733. These exclusions can complicate keeping input tax records and claiming input tax. Hammond Barr can clarify these matters and guide businesses through maintaining their input tax records. 
The Flat Rate Scheme, with its simplified VAT accounting and potential cost savings, can benefit small businesses. However, businesses regularly falling into the Limited Cost Trader category may find it more cost-effective to transition to standard VAT accounting. 
Given the complexities of the FRS and its potential implications, seeking professional assistance, such as that provided by Hammond Barr, is essential. Hammond Barr's team of AAT-qualified technicians offers comprehensive accountancy services, including expert VAT and FRS assistance. 
Contact us for more information about Hammond Barr's services and help with your tax and accounting matters. 

Want to know more? 

You can contact Hammond Barr accountants on 01438 281281 or via email at [email protected]
Share this post:
Our site uses cookies. For more information, see our cookie policy. Accept cookies and close
Reject cookies Manage settings