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Value added tax

Registered businesses charge Value Added Tax (VAT) on their sales. This is known as output VAT and the sales are referred to as outputs.

Similarly VAT is charged on most goods and services purchased by the business. This is known as input VAT.

There are three rates: standard which applies to most goods and services, reduced rate for some goods and services such as home energy and zero rate goods and services, for example, most food and children’s clothes.

Some supplies are exempt from VAT for example postage stamps, financial and insurance transactions.

A business is required to register for VAT if the value of taxable supplies exceeds the annual registration limit.


Standard: 20% (unchanged from 2015/16)

Reduced: 5% (unchanged from 2015/16)


Annual limit 2016/17 (£) 1 2015/16 (£) 2
Registration 83,000 82,000
Deregistration 81,000 80,000


  1. 1st April 2016 to 31st March 2017
  2. 1st April 2015 to 31st March 2016