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Moving direct taxes and VAT online: consultations

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HMRC are seeking views on proposals to accelerate the move to online delivery of services, with a view to making a proposed registration wizard the ‘digital by default channel’ for PAYE, corporation tax, income tax self assessment and class 2 NICs.

Today’s consultation document Digital by Default also provides an opportunity to comment on a number of related issues, HMRC said, including XBRL tagging and small repayments of corporation tax.

A separate consultation launched today, VAT: consultation on the next steps for moving VAT online, outlines proposed changes to the operation of VAT. 

As previously announced, HMRC propose that from 1 April 2012 VAT registered businesses with a turnover of less than £100,000 will be required to file VAT returns online and make electronic payment of any VAT due.

Online filing of VAT returns and electronic payment became compulsory for newly established businesses, and larger businesses, from 1 April 2010.

Online registration

‘In support of the digital by default agenda, online will also become the default channel for all businesses for VAT registration, deregistration and changes to registered details but will not be mandated at this stage,’ HMRC said.

However, the consultation document states that ‘the online portal will be the normal channel through which registration, deregistration and variations will be made, and – as such – businesses will be steered to using it’.

‘Completing the forms necessary for tax online frees up businesses resources,’ the government said in The Plan for Growth, published alongside Budget 2011.

Responses to today’s consultations are invited by 31 October.