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The deferral for VAT payments announced by the Chancellor apply from 20 March 2020 until 30 June 2020.

All VAT registered traders are eligible for this deferral.

All VAT registered traders will be eligible to defer of one quarter’s VAT: the payment due on 7 April, 7 May or 7 June 2020 or the monthly payments due on each of these dates. This is an automatic offer and no application is required. Businesses will not need to make a VAT payment during this period.

For clarification, this means, for example, that if you had a VAT period that ended on 29 February 2020 and payment is due by 7 April 2020, this can be deferred. All future VAT periods are required to be paid in the usual way.

Businesses should continue to file their VAT returns by the due date.

The Tax Faculty has asked HMRC to confirm whether it will automatically suspend collection of direct debit payments of VAT during this period and is awaiting a response. If HMRC does not automatically suspend direct debit payments businesses will need to cancel their direct debit mandate and will need to remember to set it up again in due course. Agents cannot set up direct debit mandates on behalf of taxpayers.

Taxpayers have until the end of the 2020/21 tax year to pay any liabilities that accumulate during the deferral period. VAT refunds and reclaims will be paid by the government as normal.