Vital new survey on Making Tax Digital open to all

Leading tax organisations are asking for feedback from tax professionals and businesses about their experience of Making Tax Digital (MTD) for VAT, as well as thoughts on the future of the MTD programme. The CIOT and ATT are keen to gather feedback and influence the next steps for MTD.1

The CIOT and ATT are seeking feedback from not just their respective members but any tax agent and business, whether they have been affected by MTD for VAT or not, as they may be in scope for future phases of MTD.

Tina Riches, Chair of the joint CIOT/ATT Digital and Agent Strategy Working Group, said:

“We hope this will be one of the most comprehensive and crucial feedback exercises about MTD.

“We would like to ask agents and businesses to provide feedback on their experiences of MTD for VAT and their thoughts on the future of MTD, including for other taxes. Even if you have not had to deal with MTD for VAT, you can take part by completing the sections of the survey around next steps.

“We plan to feed the results of this survey, and a summary of respondents’ comments, into a submission to HMRC with the aim of helping inform and improve any future roll out of MTD for taxpayers, their agents, and HMRC.”

Most VAT-registered businesses with a taxable turnover above the VAT threshold are now required to keep records digitally and use MTD compatible software to submit their VAT Returns.

The survey addresses the transitional and ongoing costs for businesses and agents, benefits identified, and the impact on errors, as well as posing questions regarding the next steps for MTD. The closing date for responses to the survey is Tuesday 31 December 2019.

Tina Riches said:

“The greater the number of responses and comments we receive from agents and businesses, the more this will help us and HMRC. The Government has confirmed that MTD will not be mandated for any new taxes or other businesses until 2021 at the earliest.

“Back in 2015 the first announcement of MTD was made with no prior consultation having been undertaken.2 The result was that substantial parts of the community affected never bought into the rationale for it or key elements of its design, and indeed these had to be substantially revised. The Government should learn from this and take this opportunity of evidence that will come from this survey and other means to help shape where MTD goes in future.”

Notes for editors

1. The survey can be accessed here. It should take approximately 15 minutes to complete for agents or nine minutes for those who are not agents. If you are only completing the questions on the future of MTD, this will take less than five minutes.

2. To reduce complexity, cut down costly errors and create a more stable, predictable environment for taxpayers, the Government must change the way it makes tax and budget decisions, argues the Better Budgets report in 2017 from CIOT, Institute for Government (IfG) and the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS). The report said there was not enough consultations at the start at the first stage of policy development – thinking about an issue and the whole range of possible policy responses. More here.

3.  The Chartered Institute of Taxation

The CIOT is the leading professional body in the United Kingdom concerned solely with taxation. The CIOT is an educational charity, promoting education and study of the administration and practice of taxation. One of our key aims is to work for a better, more efficient, tax system for all affected by it – taxpayers, their advisers and the authorities. The CIOT’s work covers all aspects of taxation, including direct and indirect taxes and duties. Through our Low Incomes Tax Reform Group (LITRG), the CIOT has a particular focus on improving the tax system, including tax credits and benefits, for the unrepresented taxpayer.

The CIOT draws on our members’ experience in private practice, commerce and industry, government and academia to improve tax administration and propose and explain how tax policy objectives can most effectively be achieved. We also link to, and draw on, similar leading professional tax bodies in other countries. The CIOT’s comments and recommendations on tax issues are made in line with our charitable objectives: we are politically neutral in our work.

The CIOT’s 19,000 members have the practising title of ‘Chartered Tax Adviser’ and the designatory letters ‘CTA’, to represent the leading tax qualification.