Publish the VAT Return and (optionally) file with HMRC

When you've completed your VAT Return, publish it then (optionally) file it with HMRC from Xero. If you don't want to file your VAT Return with HMRC from Xero, publish the return and file it outside Xero.

Important information about filing your VAT Return with HMRC from Xero

  • You can publish VAT Returns and file them with HMRC if you have the Adviser or Standard + All Reports user role.
  • Before you can file your VAT Return with HMRC from Xero, you'll need to register with HMRC for online filing, obtain an ID and select a password.
  • Your password for online filing with HMRC must be between 8 and 12 characters. If your password is 13 characters or more, you won't be able to file successfully through Xero.
  • You can only file with HMRC from Xero if your VAT return period is monthly or quarterly. If you file for a different period, you'll need to submit your return to HMRC outside Xero.
  • Once you've filed the return with HMRC from Xero, you can't delete the return from the Filed with HMRC tab.

Publish your VAT Return and file with HMRC

  1. Open your draft VAT Return.
  2. Click File VAT Now.

    Click the File VAT Now button to go to VAT Return (Draft) and file and publish, or publish only.

  3. (Advisor only) Review the publishing settings, then click File & Publish.

    Only the VAT Return details are submitted to HMRC when you file from Xero. The VAT Audit Report, cover page and table of contents are not submitted. If you delete the VAT Audit Report from the published report, you can't reinstate it later. You'll need to delete the published report, rerun the return and republish it. You may end up with differences if there have been changes in the period since the original publishing date.

    Image of VAT Publish Settings

  4. Enter your Gateway User ID and Password. The VAT number is taken from your organisation's Financial Settings.

    Image showing user details entered to file with HMRC.

  5. Click File & Publish, or File VAT if you have the Standard + All Reports user role.

If you run a Flat Rate VAT Return and have a flat rate adjustment amount, Xero creates a journal for this amount when you publish the return.

View your published and filed return, and check its status, on the Filed with HMRC tab in the Reports Centre. You can view the return including the Audit Report on the Published tab.

Publish your VAT Return without filing with HMRC

  1. Open your draft VAT Return.
  2. Click File VAT Now.

    Click the File VAT Now button to go to VAT Return (Draft) and file and publish, or publish only.

  3. (Advisor only) Review the publishing settings.

    Only the VAT Return details are submitted to HMRC when you file from Xero. The VAT Audit Report, cover page and table of contents are not submitted. If you delete the VAT Audit Report from the published report, you can't reinstate it later. You'll need to delete the published report, rerun the return and republish it. You may end up with differences if there have been changes in the period since the original publishing date.

    Image of VAT Publish Settings

  4. (Advisor only) Click File & Publish.
  5. Clear the check box File now with HMRC.

    Image showing filing option deselected.

  6. Click Publish VAT, or File VAT if you have the Standard + All Reports user role.

If you run a Flat Rate VAT Return and have a flat rate adjustment amount, Xero creates a journal for this amount when you publish the return.

You can view your published return on the Published tab in the Reports Centre.

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