Do I need to register for VAT? Sole trader

Trying to work out whether I need to register for VAT!

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Hi there.

I'm a UK-based sole trader - I sell my journalism (writing, editing) to various clients who publish my work online. I believe this counts as business to business sales.

My total turnover exceeds the £85,000 VAT registration threshold. However, only around £30,000 of my turnover is from sales to businesses based in the UK. The majority is from businesses based outside the UK. From my understanding of HMRC guidance, in my case "the place of supply is the place where the customer belongs" - so no VAT is chargeable on these sales.

However, I'm unclear whether I'm obliged to register for VAT or not. Is my total turnover (more than £85,000) the relevant factor here, or is it only the turnover that qualifies for UK VAT (around £30,000).

I am aware of the possible benefits of registration regardless, but right now I'm looking to discover if I'm legally obliged to register for VAT.

Replies (1)

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By Duggimon
05th Dec 2023 09:44

You're legally obliged to register for VAT if your VAT taxable turnover exceeds the threshold. If you are unable to determine this from your own understanding of your business, you need to seek advice from a professional adviser who also understands your business and can give you a definite answer.

If your assertions about the place of supply are correct then you don't have to register for VAT but I can't offer any opinion on whether those assertions are correct because you're not my client and I don't know enough about your business.

Thanks (3)