How to check if a company is tax registered

Companies that are tax registered will have company tax numbers(UTR) and even VAT numbers.

What Is a Company Tax Number?

Also referred to as “Unique Taxpayer Reference” (UTR) is a number that is given to companies and is used to identify them for issues related to tax. A UTR contains 10 digits and is given by the HMRC to all UK residents who complete a tax self-assessment. This may be a Limited company owner or a self-employed individual.

How Do You Find Existing Company Tax Number?

You already have a Tax number but for some reason lost it, how do you retrieve it?

Here’s how;

Your tax number can be found on documents such as your tax returns and your payslip. It may also be found on all your HMRC correspondence for example the letter that welcomes you to self-assessment that is sent by HMRC. You can also access your tax number by calling the Self-assessment helpline.

Can I register for VAT without a UTR number?

You cannot register for VAT without your company tax number. This is because this is the number that HMRC will use to identify you when it comes to tax issues including registering for VAT. So if you want to register for VAT make sure that you have gotten your UTR number or company tax number from the HRMC

What is a VAT Number?

It is a number that will be used to identify you when it comes to issues concerning value-added tax. This number is assigned to any business that has registered for VAT. Every company that has registered for VAT will get a unique VAT number that they can use as proof to HMRC and other companies they work with that they are registered. The number contains the letters GB at the beginning and is followed by nine figures.

How to Find a Company’s VAT Number

VAT numbers can be found on company documents including invoices and even insurance documents.

Identify a company’s official name before looking for additional information.

First, you should be able to identify the correct formal company name before looking for extra information. Finding the company’s official name is important before looking at any information. This is because it helps to find accurate information about the company on the internet and elsewhere. Chances are that if you get the company’s official name wrong you will not be able to access further information about that company.

Search a company’s name to see where they’re based.

Use the company name to search online so that you can find out where their offices are located. You can then visit their offices to get access to information about the company.

Look at an invoice or insurance document to find a VAT number.

Company Invoices and insurance documents also contain VAT numbers. So if you happen to forget your VAT number that is where you can find it. In the UK a vat number will have the letters GB at the beginning followed by nine letters. That is how you can identify it on the invoice or the insurance document.

Checking a VAT number is valid

To check if a company’s VAT number is valid you can use two methods. You can call the HMRC VAT Helpline or you can use the VAT Information Exchange System (VIES).

Making a call to HMRC VAT Helpline

You can call the VAT Helpline on 0300 200 3700 to check if a supplier’s or customer’s VAT number is valid. This should be done during weekdays between 8 am and 6 pm. The limit of this approach is that you cannot get help outside of working hours. So if you urgently need to verify if someone’s VAT number is valid on a Saturday the VAT Helpline will not be of help.

Making use of the digital platform – online VAT Information Exchange System (VIES)

The VIES offers a VAT number validation service for any business registered in the European Union. It is a search engine that you can access online to get up-to-date information on VAT numbers. To access VIES you should go to their European Commission website whose link will be shared here.

What to do if a VAT registration number is not valid?

So you have gone through the validation process and have found that the VAT number you were checking is not valid, what do you do? Firstly it is important to cross-check with your supplier or client to see if they gave you the correct VAT number in the first place. It may have just been a case of missing a number or adding a wrong number. After confirmation from the suppliers, you can then check it again in the VIES search engine. When this is done and the VAT number is still invalid the company you are dealing with should then contact the HMRC to check with them on what is wrong with the VAT number.

How to Reclaim VAT?

Reclaiming VAT is a complicated process that you would do well if you involved a tax specialist or an accountant. The fact that you are VAT registered means that you charge VAT on all of the goods and services you offer. On the other hand, you can also be able to reclaim VAT on goods that you purchase that are meant to be used by your company. To reclaim VAT it is important to know which goods and services you can claim VAT on. You can only claim VAT on goods and services that will be used by your business. You can reclaim VAT on things like supplies for your offices, like computers, chairs, desks, cleaning equipment, stationary, and many more as long as they will be for company use. You cannot reclaim VAT for goods that are for personal use. On the other hand, if the product will be partially for business and partially for personal use the HMRC will calculate how much VAT you will be able to reclaim.

If you need any further help regarding VAT registration for small businesses please don’t hesitate to get in contact with Fortress Accounts.

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