VAT return dates - selecting the relevant period

I am submitting our VAT return (first one we’ve done) for the period up to 31st January using MTD. Unfortunately the software keeps taking it up to 30th April, which is a period we are still in, so I get an error. How can I set it to just submit the return for the income and outgoings up to 31st January?


When you go to create your VAT return, are you given the option for the period ending 31/01/21?

I can’t seem to change the end date - it looks as you have shown on the top line.

The start and end date are determined by the period you select. Do you see the period ending 31/01/2021 in the list of periods (like the screenshot)?

No, just the one ending 30 April

The list of periods are sent to us by HMRC. If the period is missing, you would need to contact HMRC unfortunately.

Okay, so if I wait until 1 May, enter all my income and outgoings until then, and then submit, that should work… ? Am hoping it won’t just roll the requirement on for three months!

I would expect the period ending 31/01/2021 to be showing now, as the deadline for submission is usually 1 month + 7 days (7th March in this case).

But as you’re using MTD, we need to use the periods that HMRC supplies. So if the period you’re expecting isn’t showing, you would need to raise it with HMRC directly to see why this may be happening.

It’s also worth checking your HMRC account directly on their website too. If you go to the “Making Tax Digital” section of your account, you should see the periods there too.

It’s worth taking a look at this post - Making Tax Digital: Troubleshooting
Although the post mentions the next period, the situation would be similar.

Also worth bearing in mind the first period is often longer than 3 months. This is laid out on the VAT registration letter you should have received from the HMRC.

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Thanks QF Mathew and Lurch for your help.


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