VAT68 and online applications - any experience?

Does anyone have any recent experience of dealing with a TOGC/VAT68 process using the online system

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Thanks in advance to the community for sharing any helpful comments.

Rather than simply de-registering and getting a new VAT number, a client wishes to retain their old VAT number whilst changing legal entity. Fair enough, not what I would do, but hey. Should be straight forward right, VAT1 & VAT68, job done - well of course, that is ignoring how long it might take HMRC to actually process the forms (but that's another issue). 

In this new age of only having online VAT applications, we have identified something odd. If you follow the relevant questions that indicate TOGC and transfer of VAT number, you are presented with two statements:

"The previous owner must deregister the business for VAT, ideally using the 'Change registration details' onine service"


"You must apply for VAT no more than 30days afer the previous owner applies to deregister"

Now, I always thought that when it comes to VAT68's and transferring a VAT number, that the previous owner must NOT deregister for VAT. The whole point was to keep the VAT number 'live'. The VAT68 form still clearly states that the previous owner must not deregister. When did that change?

Has anyone recently been through this process? If so, did you take deregistration action via the online account for the previous owner? Or did HMRC simply deal with this themselves when the VAT68 was submitted?

It's often challenging enough dealing with the legal and technical aspects of VAT, without having to flex the grey matter this much over a seemingly straightforward administrative matter.

Thanks again !

Replies (2)

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By Matrix
19th Apr 2024 12:26

No I was advised to do it on paper. The client continued to submit as usual so I don’t know if I would risk deregistering while you are waiting in case the record is closed and the new record not opened yet. You could give it a go but take screenshots of the instructions and feed back here.

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By Taxguy96
19th Apr 2024 13:58

Whilst it was a paper form, the last TOGC I did took over 1.5 years to do, so would warn against.

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