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HMRC Agent VAT portal tip

Finding old returns

Morning all,

I was just on the Agent VAT portal (the old one, haven't touched MTD yet) as I'm doing very late accounts for a last minuter. I needed to see the figures filed for the first two quarters of the financial year but, with the accounts being so late, they're not shown under "view submitted returns".

Anyway, I discovered that if you click on the oldest one available, the URL for the page will be https://www.tax.service.gov.uk/vat-file/trader/<VAT number>/period/###/return where ### is a three digit number. This is the number of the period and older ones can be accessed by manually changing this to the number for the earlier period.

I think the number is the month [citation needed] so to access my older periods I took three off, then three off again to get the two quarters prior to the one I was linked to. Thought it might come in handy for anyone else with a similar issue, I have no idea how far back you can go but you can at least get a couple more than they'll link you to.

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14th Jan 2019 12:01

Good tip.

Not sure I'll be using it a lot but it's good to know for those troublesome new clients who come along.

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to lionofludesch
14th Jan 2019 12:25

That's exactly why I needed it, wish I'd found it sooner, it's come up maybe half a dozen times since we started using the agent portal for VAT, not often but it would have saved a lot of head scratching at the time.

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By PitiBev
14th Jan 2019 13:04

That's invaluable. Just tried it going back to 2011 and it works perfectly.
Thanks Duggimon

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14th Jan 2019 13:07

Duggigod!

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14th Jan 2019 13:32

Frankly, this is brilliant. Simple but brilliant.

I have bookmarked the page for future reference and I am also wondering whether this methodology might resolve data access issues for other taxes on the HMRC systems.

You never know!

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15th Jan 2019 09:06

Curious, this means HMRC is storing all this useful data - but not allowing users to (easily) access it.

it would take a programmer a matter of an hour or so to publically extend the list back to the opening point of the database with a basic search function.

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