You may request a transfer of the VAT number of the business you acquired. It is very important you discuss this matter with the seller beforehand.
Normally, when a VAT registered business is sold or transferred, the seller would complete the form VAT 7 to de-register from VAT for the business. The new owner would register for VAT for the business in his own right.
Both seller and buyer must agree
However, if it is beneficial to keep the existing VAT number of the business, you and the seller must agree with the transfer. For this purpose, you must complete the form VAT68 and the form VAT1.
Once the transfer is approved by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), it cannot be revoked.
Once you have completed and signed the form, please send it to:
HM Revenue & Customs
VAT Registration Service
77 Victoria Street
Outstanding VAT and VAT refund
After the transfer is successful, if there is any outstanding VAT, you would have to pay for it even though it is inherent from the seller. Likewise, if there is any VAT refund, you would entitle to it not the seller.
The seller must also give you their VAT records.
Others important matters
The seller would cancel their direct debits for the VAT and remove their accountant’s access to the VAT online account.
If you would like to continue to use the seller’s accountant to take care of your VAT returns, you must inform the HMRC within 21 days of the form VAT68 being signed.
You must set up new direct debits for the VAT.