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VAT EU refunds for IoM traders

All claims for recovery of input tax incurred by way of business in other EU member states are managed by an online system, available on Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs website at

Businesses established in the UK and the Isle of Man should submit claims for VAT incurred in other EU countries through HMRC’s system. A VAT registered trader will first have to register to use HMRC’s online services and then enrol to use this service at

To enrol you will need 5 pieces of information to ensure validity of the application:

  • VAT Number
  • Principal place of business post code
  • EDR (effective date of registration)
  • Final month of last VAT return submitted
  • Box 5 figure on last VAT return submitted

This data will be verified against data held on the relevant UK based systems. However VAT return details for Isle of Man VAT registered traders are not held on HMRC’s system. As a result Isle of Man VAT registered traders need to enter n/a (not applicable) as the ‘Final month of last VAT return submitted’. For the box 5 figure please click on the help icon next to this field and follow the instructions for recently registered traders who have not submitted a VAT return.

Notice 723A Refunds of VAT in the European Community for EC and non EC businesses is available here.

Agent authorisation for VAT EU refunds

Traders can register and enrol to use the HMRC VAT EU Refunds for Agents service and set up authorisations online for you to act on behalf of your clients and submit refund claims online.

To set up client authorisations using the Online Agent Authorisation process, you'll need to sign up for the VAT EU Refunds for Agents service. If you are already using HMRC's online services, you can add VAT EU Refunds for Agents to your portfolio in the 'Services you can add' section of 'Your HMRC services'. Agents new to HMRC's online services need to register for the VAT EU Refunds for Agents service by visiting  Click on 'Register' under the 'New user' section and then select the 'Agent' option and follow the on-screen instructions.

You can use the service even if you aren't VAT registered in the UK. You should request a VAT agent's reference number by following the link within the 'What you will need to enrol' page during the registration and enrolment process.

Registration and enrolment process

Once you have your VAT agent reference number (this will be displayed on screen) you can continue to sign up for the VAT EU Refunds for Agents service.

The registration process only takes a few minutes to complete. You'll have to:

  • provide a few details about yourself
  • create a password
  • make a note of your user ID - this will appear on screen and HMRC will confirm it by post within 7 days

You will receive an activation code (also known as PIN) by post within 7 days of registering. You must use it to activate the service within 28 days from the date on the letter.

After you've done this you'll be able to set up client authorisations online to be able to submit your client's refund claims online using the VAT EU Refunds service.

To complete the agent authorisation process for Isle of Man based clients, you'll need the 5 pieces of information as follows:

  • VAT Number
  • Principal Place of Business Post Code
  • EDR (effective date of registration)
  • Final month of last VAT return submitted
  • Box 5 figure on last VAT Return submitted

For the last 2 pieces of information follow the instructions above for trader enrolment.

Once you have requested online authorisation, HMRC will send your client a letter containing a unique authorisation code. The 2 letters in front of the code show which service it's for - the code for VAT includes the letters 'VR'.

It's important to let your client know they'll be receiving this letter and that they'll need to tell you the code. Your client must do this quickly as the code expires 30 days after HMRC issues it. To complete the authorisation process, you need to access your online agent's account and enter the code.

New VAT EU Refund clients will appear on your client list within 24 hours of completing the authorisation process.


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