Non-UK businesses can now opt to make UK VAT refund claims electronically. The claims are submitted electronically using HMRC’s Secure Data Exchange Service (SDES) system. The system is optional and there are no immediate plans to make it mandatory.
UPDATE: The new Chancellor Jeremy Hunt has reversed this tax measure announced by his predecessor.
The VAT refund process for EU businesses incurring UK VAT changed from 1 January 2021. The electronic EU refund process can no longer be used. Instead form VAT65A must now be completed and submitted to HMRC.
HMRC have changed the way they issue the certificate of status (CoS) to UK businesses. The CoS, which often needs to be included with foreign VAT refund claims as proof of UK trading status, is now issued by email by default.
HMRC are making available the option for NETPs to request VAT repayments by bank transfer instead of receiving a payable order.