Making Tax Digital step by step sign up process

Make sure you sign up with HMRC by 24 July 2019 to ensure that you can link your VAT software and file your June 2019 quarter return! After this date there is a chance that you won’t be able to file!

1  Ensure you have compatible software


If you are unsure what software you require, then contact a reputable accountant or choose one from the list on this link:


If the software that you are using is not on this list, it will not be able to file your return as it has not been tested by HMRC. There are about 300 different packages on the list and the filter is not set to help you choose easily. Therefore, if you are not sure, contact an accountant!

2  Gather together your information


Make sure you have the following information to hand. (The sign up system is sensitive and times out after a relatively short period of time and you then become stuck in a loop!):
a. a Government Gateway user ID and password (If you are new to VAT filing, you will need to set this up via the following link:
b. VAT registration number (you will find this on your VAT registration    certificate)
c. Effective date of registration (You will find this on your VAT certificate)
d. Unique Taxpayer Registration number (either under your self-assessment or corporation tax reference. Partnerships will need the UTR of the partnership. UTRs can be found on correspondence from HMRC)
e. Company name and number (Companies and LLPs). You can find this at Companies House.
f. National Insurance Number (Sole Traders)


How to find your VAT registration certificate:
Log in to the HMRC account that you previously filed your VAT returns and print a copy of your VAT registration certificate. Then log out again. (The certificate may not be visible in your account once you have started the sign-up process!)

3  Sign up for Making Tax Digital


Click on the following link to start the sign up process:

You will need to do this by 24 July 2019 (for the June quarter VAT periods). If you leave it until the end of the month, you will not be able to access the sign up service until 8 August 2019, as HMRC puts a block on sign ups during the final week of the filing period. This will also apply for July and August quarter ends. (Sign up needs to be done by 23 August 2019 and 24 September respectively)

Once you have completed all of the details, you should receive an automated message stating that it could take 72 hours for the process to be completed and that you will receive an email confirming this.


In some cases, it has taken 5 working days to receive this email. If you use Mimecast as your firewall, it may automatically block the confirmation email as it comes from a “No reply” email address. Therefore, you may wish to use a personal email address and then change the contact details after sign up!

4  Link your software to your Making Tax Digital account with HMRC


This is done via the accounting software itself and each package is different.


If it is not obvious from your software that there is a link, then you may need to seek further guidance from the software provider or your accountant!

5  Authenticate the software


The software link should take you to a page on the HMRC website that will ask you for a mobile or other device to send a verification code to. ON receipt of the code, please enter it where specified. This is your authentication token and is valid for 18 months. Once the 18 months has expired, you will need to re-authorise your software.


Similarly, if you decide that you want an accountant or other agent to file your VAT returns, that person will need to authenticate the software. This will need some contact with HMRC to do!

6  File Making Tax Digital VAT return


Once you receive the token, your software should be linked and you should be able to file MTD VAT returns

7  Pay the amount of VAT that is due


In the event of any difficulties, however, HMRC advises that you pay the amount of VAT that is due on the return by the normal due date. This will avoid penalties being levied for late payment. Once the payment has been made, it should give you more time to file the return!

Get in touch today

​London office

45 Pall Mall

T +44 (0)20 7930 7797
F +44 (0)330 024 3300

Watford office

Radius House
51 Clarendon Road
Herts WD17 1HP

T +44 (0)1923 232938
F +44 (0)330 024 3300

Milton Keynes office

249 Silbury Boulevard
Milton Keynes

T + 44 (0)1908 232020
F + 44 (0)330 024 3300

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Hillier Hopkins is a trading name of Hillier Hopkins LLP, which is registered as a Limited Liability Partnership in England & Wales, No. OC303707. Registered Office: Radius House, 51 Clarendon Road, Watford, Herts WD17 1HP. Registered to carry on audit work in the UK and Ireland by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales. A list of members of the LLP is available at the above address. HH and Hi logos are trade marks belonging to Hillier Hopkins LLP. © Hillier Hopkins LLP.