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  • Katie Bunting

VAT Invoices - What is Needed

Whenever you supply standard-rated or reduced-rated goods or services to another VAT-registered entity, you must be issued a VAT invoice. The same applies is you purchase standard-rated or reduced-rated goods or services from another VAT-registered entity - they must provide you with a VAT invoice.


There are many documents that you may receive when purchasing something such as a purchase order, proforma invoice and order confirmation. However, the only document that you can use to reclaim VAT is a VAT invoice that meets all of the criteria.


What you MUST show on any VAT invoices you issue, or use to claim VAT back with:


  • a sequential number which uniquely identifies the document

  • the time of supply (tax point)

  • the date if invoice issue (if different to date of supply)

  • merchant name, address and VAT number

  • customer name and address

  • a description that identifies the goods or services supplied

  • for each description, there needs to be a quantity, rate of VAT and amount payable excluding VAT

  • the gross total payable, excluding VAT

  • the rate of discount offered (if applicable)

  • the total amount of VAT chargeable

  • the unit price

Here is an example of a completed VAT invoice from the government website:



If you have been given an invalid invoice from a supplier, you must go back to them and request a valid VAT invoice in order to claim input tax.


For more help on VAT invoices you can visit https://www.gov.uk/guidance/vat-guide-notice-700#section16

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