Struggling businesses are being urged to take advantage of the option to defer any VAT return payments due next week.
The Government announced last month that VAT-registered firms could defer any payments arising in the period up to 30 June 2020.
The deferral is one of several measures introduced since 13 March 2020 to help businesses manage during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis.
Any VAT return payments that are deferred in the period up to 30 June 2020 will need to be paid by 31 March 2021.
Firms that wish to take up the option are being advised to cancel their direct debit before the next stagger deadline on Thursday 7 May 2020.
According to the Chartered Institute of Taxation, VAT-registered businesses should ideally allow five working days to cancel direct debits.
If businesses do not cancel their direct debit, HMRC will collect any VAT due as usual and potentially intensify problems for those already struggling with poor cashflow.
John Cullinane, tax policy director at the Chartered Institute of Taxation, said:
"Hundreds of thousands of businesses will be getting their coronavirus job retention scheme grants this week.
"But they should not forget about the other Government help which can assist cashflow in a time when financial pressures are high."
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