UK new VAT regulations re: bookkeeping

I am a self-assessed bookkeeper for three small companies, two of whom are VAT registered. I work from home and I provide the necessary VAT figures to the company so they can pay their VAT.
I have endeavoured to understand the new regulations that come into force next April as per the website. It seems that the companies will need their own accounting software. I would therefore be out of work.
My apologies for this not being specifically question but is there anybody who contributes to the forum from a UK VAT company who could advise me? I noted that there have been previous questions as to whether will be able to deal with the changes but they have been from companies with their own software.
Thank you

The link is a US government site. Where did you see that companies will need their own accounting software?

Sorry - GOV.UK
On 13 July 2017, the Financial Secretary to the Treasury and Paymaster General announced that Making Tax Digital for VAT will come into effect from April 2019. From that date, businesses with a turnover above the VAT threshold (currently £85,000) will have to:

  • keep their records digitally (for VAT purposes only), and
  • provide their VAT return information to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) through Making Tax Digital (MTD) functional compatible software

That doesn’t mean they have to have their own software. Using a third party to keep their accounting records would be ok imho.

The real question is will Manager have the required link to handle the VAT reporting

Perhaps I am misunderstanding - but all I currently do is print the VAT return sheet and send to my client. This is sounding like I would have to send it to HMRC, a job I would not wish to have - and nor would my clients. Hence believing they would have to bring their accounts ‘in house’ with their own software. They are such small companies I am thinking cost would be prohibitive.
Thanks for your understanding of my concern.

Assuming that Manager will be updated to include the option to submit the VAT return electronically, then if you use the Cloud version, your client could have access to actually send the return rather than you sending it.

Obviously there is a cost involved in using the Cloud version but it can be spread over all your clients.

If small businesses in the UK feel this is not a viable situation then they need to lobby their MPs to get the regulation/law changed although this is now probably too late!

Thanks for that. Am already on cloud. Useful piece of advice.

All the European Nations are moving towards digital invoices and declaration but they are offering online instruments to do this without using any software. You cannot lobby against the progress…

Lubos is planning to use ODBC to support Making Tax Digital for Manager. This should be coming quite soon as the latest release - adding custom reports builds the way for this.

I think he still needs to register Manager as software that supports Making tax Digital with HMRC though.

We have been trying to understand the new UK VAT regulations starting April 2019. I have just read again the “VAT CHANGES TO THE SUPPLY OF DIGITAL SERVICES 2019” published 11th September. It is very specific about having an audit trail. i have just looked at the audit trail for the specific company that will have to comply with these regulations and it would appear that the trail includes all my actions for all five of the companies I deal with. Have tried reading the guides to see if it is possible to limit the audit trail to one company but cannot find any information.
Any suggestions?

Hi dalacor/Lubos,

Apologies if this is covered elsewhere but are you able to provide an update on how the modifications are progressing to make Manager MTD compliant for VAT returns next year?

With Manager not showing on HMRC’s list of approved providers or those working on becoming so, I’m getting a bit nervous.

My accountant is recommending that I move to compliant software but I’m reluctant to leave Manager. I’d far rather pay the costs of cloud with Manager (as I am assuming will be required) than move to a whole new software package.

Any news on progress would be much appreciated. Thanks.

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So will other countries be able to or is UK special

Be able to what, @Wornout?

Agree with guys, this things is quite important here in UK.


Also in Italy. In 2019 we will have something very similar to UK.

Have the software report (talk) directly to tax authorities, as per the topics UK thrust.
An increasing requirement for GST/VAT regimes.

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One interim solution appears to be to use a piece of bridging “software” to digitally submit VAT information from an excel spreadsheet to HMRC. There are a few providers coming out free with solutions approved by HMRC.

This being one - albeit one untested by me.

Hopefully this will provide a “stop-gap” solution until manager is MTD compliant.

There must be thousands of business in the UK in the same position. If the above solution is acceptable to HMRC, it begs the question of what are they really gaining from this change? The existing Government Gateway effectively provides the same thing.

They are putting responsibility and expense of keeping up with technology changes onto taxpayers. This way, they don’t have to update their portal.