ExpressVAT is an HMRC-recognised smartphone app, which is the simplified version of the XpressoBooks app which communicates with an accountant’s desktop system and adds a few extra functionalities that make sense in that environment. ExpressVAT saves, stores and submits everything digitally, only needing a smartphone – no computer or other software is needed.
MTD compliance – more than using an accounts program
There are a few misunderstandings about MTD-compliance that lead a business owner believe his/her business is MTD-compliant when in fact it is not. To check your MTD-compliance read our Making Tax Digital- 5 Things You Need to Know article.
Many business owners assume they are MTD-compliant just because they are keeping records digitally (in an accounts program for instance), and have always submitted their VAT returns through the existing government gateway account.
HMRC’s VAT Portal Intentions
HMRC’s VAT portal is, in fact, being phased out, and without a valid exemption (deferment in HMRC’s speak), businesses will no longer be able to file future VAT returns as they have been used to. The only way to submit VAT returns in the future is via an MTD-compatible software application. MTD-compatible specifically means being able to securely transmit data to, and receive data from HMRC without manually typing the final figures – the digitally stored financial information must be submitted directly through a new HMRC programming interface.
Embracing the Digital Future
Becoming fully MTD-compliant will initially cause some problems but will ultimately be a great advantage for the majority of businesses. HMRC will be adding other taxes (Self Assessment for example) in the very near future and any compliant software will stay compliant for anything new that is added. Should impetus be needed to adopt a fully digital solution to streamline operations, and cut down on manual paperwork, MTD is it.
The UK is actually very late to the “Digital Party” – Latin America, Russia, and a number of European countries started (and finished) before us. Brazil has been E-invoicing since 2008 and filing taxes since 2015. In a few years, a majority of countries will be using digital platforms not just for tax submission but also for inter-company payment and invoicing systems.
“Your business in the Palm of Your Hand”
A compliant app is of no use if it is not
- easy to use,
- easy to access
- and doesn’t break the bank.
- ExpressVAT keeps your records digitally, saves snapshots of your receipts and submits your VAT returns directly from your phone.
- It’s easy to access 24/7 – directly on your phone – it doesn’t need to communicate with your computer as it wasn’t an afterthought tacked on to an accounting program.
- £6.99 a month including VAT – Do we need to say more?
As digital tax is taking over the tax system, the main challenge facing the government is to help small service businesses and accounting professionals digitise their business processes, increase productivity, manage cash flow and get paid faster.
Small cash-based businesses usually without processes in place, will have more time to spend on cash flow and inventory management (which is not covered by MTD) because of less time spent chasing bits of paper. An app like ExpressVAT that keeps “Your business In the Palm of Your Hand” will certainly save them more time – and money.