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Nobody likes paying their bills, but at least HMRC try to make it easier to pay a VAT bill. There are several methods for sending them payment.

Direct Debit

You have the option to pay your quarterly VAT payments by direct debit when you register for the VAT online service. HMRC only debits the amount on your VAT return, and won’t use this to collect any other money you owe to them.

You can change an existing payment method to a direct debit online, but only if you’re the authorised signatory. If not, fill in a paper application to set up a direct debit, and post it to HMRC. They’ll send you a letter once it’s set up, confirming when the first payment will be taken.


comprehensive vat returns service

Online card payment

If you have a UK debit or corporate credit card, you can pay your VAT bill online. HMRC don’t allow taxpayers to pay their VAT bill with a personal credit card.

To make your payment, you’ll need your VAT registration number and card details.

Just note that there may be transaction charges when paying by credit card. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to pay any penalties, surcharges or interest using this payment method .

Telephone and internet banking or BACS

You can pay your VAT bill by making a bank transfer into HMRC’s account. Just remember to include your VAT registration number as a reference!

It usually takes around three working days for the money to arrive in HMRC’s account. As accountants, it’s our job to remind you that it could take longer, so make sure you authorise the transfer in plenty of time.


Payment for your VAT bill can also be made via CHAPS. This is an automatic payment that HMRC receive the same day you authorise it. Again, include your VAT Registration number for reference.

Standing Order

Set up a standing order to HMRC to pay your VAT bill. You can do this with your bank, or complete a standing order authority request form with HMRC.

Learn more about VAT, or talk to one of the team about our online VAT accounting services. Call 020 3355 4047, or use the live chat button on screen.

About The Author

Lee Murphy

MAAT and ICPA accountant, with a passion for making accountancy and bookkeeping accessible. Other interests include cloud-based software development for web and mobile access, keeping fit, reading, and entrepreneurship.

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