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VAT Return is due but VAT Online says there are no returns to submit!

VAT Return is due but VAT Online says there are...

 I need to submit my client's VAT Return for the Quarter Dec10 to Feb11. However HMRC Online gives me the following message:

   There are currently no outstanding periods that require a VAT return.

I am baffled. Has anybody else encountered this? How do I submit the Return?



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By TessaW
30th Mar 2011 06:47

Probably another HMRC error

I had this problem with a client last month. Phoned the VAT helpline & was told that the client's company apparently no longer traded. Evidently HMRC had sent out some sort of letter or form re imports - postman couldn't find my client & it went back to HMRC marked "address not found".  On that evidence alone the VAT office decided my client no longer needed to do returns!  Man on helpline sounded completely exasperated at uselessness of staff (or the system). Anyway, my client would be put back onto the VAT system but they didn't need to file a return until the next quarter when a 6 monthly return would have to be done & no payment was needed till then either.   

My client could sit on £100K for 3 months. The next day I got a new client - retired naval chap with a job had a demand from HMRC as they haven't taxed his naval pension correctly. He'd tried to sort it out himself but just got a response to pay up in 30 days or else.  Why doesn't HMRC have normal priorities?  Plus - evidently if you don't want to pay your VAT you just need to look out for any correspondence from the VAT office - don't open it & put it back in the post box with "address not found" & you have a VAt holiday.


Thanks (1)
30th Mar 2011 08:06

This happened to one of my clients

HMRC said it was because the registered office address had been changed (!!***???)  Somehow he then thought this was my fault.

My client will also be filing a 6 month return in May.

Thanks (0)
30th Mar 2011 09:28

It happens

more often than it should. Unfortunately staff do not have the manpower to sort out all queries so they write them off and wait for us to contact them with the answer. A few years ago customs had a backlog of registrations so they dumped them all and when tax payers wrote in or phoned they were told to send in another application. A moratorium on problems. 

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By aadil
30th Mar 2011 13:01


I spoke to a very helpful lady who has now resolved this issue. I would have to file a 6 months Return in June.


The client recently moved offices so the mail was being sent back to HMRC, who then tagged my client as a 'Missing Trader'!

The Corp tax office has got the correct address but the VAT people don't. I thought everything was linked?

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By Luke
03rd Aug 2011 16:03

Ah, that is what has happened

I am having the same problem with a client. I am trying to file the return to 30/6 with no luck.

I phoned up and helpfully they have also decided that I am not the agent!  And the client has been abroad for two weeks too - ahh!

I resorted to getting the client to pay the VAT due across and then emailing HMRC to state the circumstances, so therefore hopefully getting a tick in the box for 'reasonable excuse'.

Now having seen the above I realise it is probably something to do with the change of address that HMRC mucked up.

CT changed it correctly but VAT still had the old address for nearly a year and it took nearly several letters to get the correct address everywhere.  At least I don't seem to be the only one.

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By rmunday
03rd Feb 2014 16:35

VAT Return is due but VAT Online says there are no returns to su

Fascinating how little interest HMRC take in this even when the error is pointed out to them.

What would happen I wonder if the situation persisted for over three years. Would HMRC be denied from pursuing vat for periods more than three years old?

Obviously the trader has not received any request to file a return, is unable to do so, and even if he was to make a payment the HMRC system would probably repay it to him as there was no return to set the payment against.


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15th Jul 2015 14:10

VAT Return is due but Online says there are no returns to submit


Me too!

Just spent over an hour trying to sort this on clients behalf.  


This is absolutely crazy - my client hasn't moved or changed any aspect of his business - but his file has been marked as "missing".




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