Reclaiming Input VAT: Keep proper VAT invoices.
A recent Upper Tier tribunal case has reiterated the importance of obtaining and maintaining VAT invoices to support your business transactions. You must keep VAT records for at least 6 years (or 10 years if you use the VAT MOSS service). In the case of Zipvit Ltd Vs HMRC the Upper Tribunal judge decided that as Zipvit did not possess any valid VAT invoices from Royal Mail it had no right to reclaim any input tax.
You can keep VAT records on paper, electronically or as part of a software program (eg book-keeping software). Records must be accurate, complete and readable. Whiting & Partners are Certified Advisors for Xero, one of the leading Cloud Accounting packages, which allows pdf copies of invoices to be stored electronically and accessed at the click of a button.
If you’ve lost a VAT invoice or it is damaged and no longer readable, ask the supplier for a duplicate (marked ‘duplicate’). Remember, HMRC can visit your business to inspect your record keeping and disallow your VAT reclaim and charge you a penalty if your records aren’t in order.