UK VAT Number Validation

Updated on May 10, 2022

Until recently, the VIES system was used to verify UK VAT numbers. HMRC’s new service, available following Brexit, lets you review and verify the company information of UK clients. Make sure you are aware of the changes and how you may continue to sell with ease.

VIES, the VAT Information Exchange System, is the best way to verify a VAT number. Details regarding VAT numbers issued across the EU can be found in the European Commission-maintained VAT number database.

On December 1, GOV.UK introduced their own VAT check service as Brexit nears its conclusion. Our API has been updated to work with their service in the same way.

The UK will also exit the VAT MOSS (Mini One-Stop Shop) programme, which means that if you sell to consumers in the EU, you will need to obtain an EU MOSS number from one of the 27 Member States.

Vatstack is undergoing a major overhaul, and you can learn more about it at the end of this page.

Check a VAT Registration Number

Generally speaking, it’s a good idea to verify all VAT numbers on invoices. Despite the fact that a VAT registration number may be listed on an invoice, the number may be invalid or expired.

Checking a VAT number is the most efficient method of verifying its authenticity. Press “Search” after entering the UK VAT number, which might be 9 or 12 digits long.

In order to verify a UK VAT number, use the official website.
In order to verify a UK VAT number, use the official website.
If this VAT number is valid, you will be able to see the business information of the company registered to it. Otherwise, an error message will appear. It is important to keep in mind that fresh VAT registrations may not yet be included in the database.

A unique ‘consultation number’ can be obtained as official proof of validation. Simply select the checkbox next to “Search” and then type in the VAT registration number that you have on file with HMRC.

In order to show your tax administration that the given number has been validated at the specified time, you need to use a consultation number. It is normally recommended that you use your VAT number for validation and save the consultation number you receive.

Check Automatically With Our API

You may, of course, use an API to completely automate this process. Validate your UK customers’ VAT numbers and other business details using the Vatstack VAT number check API.

In addition, if you store your VAT number in the Vatstack dashboard, a consultation number will be obtained on your behalf.

For VAT number 177596254, this is the response we got from our API.

{ “active”: true, “company_address”: “179 HARROW ROAD, THE BATTLESHIP BUILDING, LONDON, W2 6NB”, “company_name”: “VIRGIN GALACTIC LTD”, “company_type”: null, “consultation_number”: “Eue-chi-puu”, “country_code”: “GB”, “created”: “2020-12-08T17:43:23.946Z”, “id”: “5fc923bb40fc7367dc372722”, “query”: “177596254”, “requested”: “2020-12-08T17:43:23.899Z”, “type”: “gb_vat”, “updated”: “2020-12-08T17:43:23.946Z”, “valid”: true, “valid_format”: true, “vat_number”: “177596254” }

UK VAT Changes in Vatstack

For requests that begin with ‘GB’ or include 9 or 12 numbers, VIES will no longer handle them. Instead they will be forwarded to the UK government agency. There were a few changes as a result:

If the result was for a UK VAT number, the type field in the validation object will now indicate gb vat rather than eu vat.
Providing the country code prefix “GB” for UK VAT numbers is no longer required; however, requests will be processed with or without the prefix. Consistency is recommended so that your historical records can be queried accurately.
Your EU VAT number can no longer be used to acquire proof of validation. If you activate the new United Kingdom tax zone in your dashboard and save your UK VAT number, you can re-enable the consultation number and requested fields. There are no thresholds for non-established-taxable persons (NETPs) making taxable supplies in the UK, thus they must register and pay VAT to the HMRC.
As on January 1, 2021, the GB member state boolean will be set to false. There are 27 items returned if you search for all of the member states’ rates.

Starting on January 1, 2021, the UK will no longer be included in VAT MOSS reports and EC Sales Lists (ESL). Please activate UK VAT in the tax area section of your dashboard to continue generating VAT reports for the UK.