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Are you an Importer? Find out if Postponed VAT accounting could benefit your business!



What is Postponed VAT Accounting?


PVA allows UK VAT registered importers to account for and recover import VAT on their VAT return, which provides significant cash flow benefits compared to paying the import VAT when the goods are imported. PVA is available permanently, however, different rules apply in different situations. In some cases, you must account for import VAT on your VAT return – for example, if you delay your customs declaration.


You can go to GOV‌‌‌‌.UK to check when PVA must be used and when it is optional.


How can I start using PVA?


There isn’t an application process for PVA, and you do not need to notify HMRC in advance if you want to start accounting for import VAT on your VAT return. However, you need to confirm in your customs declaration that you are using PVA.


If you are doing your own customs declarations though CHIEF enter G – Postponed accounting for VAT approved – as the method of payment in Box 47e. If completing your declarations through CDS enter your VAT registration number at header level in data element 3/40. Please be aware that once the declaration has been submitted this cannot be changed.


If someone else is doing your customs declarations on your behalf such as a freight forwarder, customs agent, broker or fast parcel operator you must tell them you want to use PVA so that they can complete the customs declaration correctly.


How can I complete my VAT return if using PVA?


After you have selected PVA on your customs declaration you will need to account for import VAT when you complete your VAT return.

To complete your VAT return, you will need:

  • details of any customs entries you have made in your own records

  • copies of your monthly postponed import VAT statement, when available.

Unless you have delayed your customs declaration, each of your statements will show the total import VAT postponed for the previous month.


If you are delaying your customs declarations:

  • you must account for import VAT on the return which includes the date you imported the goods

  • to complete the boxes on your return, you’ll need to estimate the import VAT due from your records of imported goods

  • when you submit your delayed declaration, you must select that you’re accounting for your VAT on your return.

Your next online monthly statement will show the amount of import VAT due on that declaration. You’ll then be able to adjust your estimate and account for any difference on your next return.


How do I get the statement I need to complete my VAT return?


If you account for your import VAT on your VAT return, you’ll need to get a postponed import VAT statement online.


Unless you have delayed your customs declaration, each statement will show the total import VAT postponed for the previous month. Your statements will usually be available to view by the 6th working day of the month.


To view your statements, you’ll need a Government Gateway user ID and password which is linked to your EORI number. If you do not have a user ID and password, you can create your account on GOV‌‌‌‌.UK.


Do you need more help with PVA? How else can we help?


· 1st July - Bitesize Session: Postponed VAT Accounting for Imports - this FREE webinar delivered in partnership with HMRC will look over Postponed VAT Accounting including key new considerations for trading.


· 10th August - “How to Complete Customs Declarations” Training - this one-day course delivered virtually will provide attendees basic working knowledge of how to complete simple import and export customs declarations entries. This course will also help you understand what information you need to provide to the customs agents in charge of doing customs declarations on your behalf.


· Chamber Customs - We can complete customs declarations on your behalf; we work with exporters and importers of all sizes and have direct links to all sea, air, rail, road ports and terminals in the UK.


· Specialist Support: The Chamber works with a number of approved suppliers and Strategic partners who specialised on this area. Email us at exportbritain@gmchamber.co.uk if you want an introduction.


Source: HMRC

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