He wasnt collecting VAT, and was never aware he had to.
As you can imagine, this is now a very traumatic time, and after over 15 months of investigation, they still havent given him a figure other than his own personal tax bill penalties which is into 5 figures.
This is a small enterprise, barely just surviving as it is..
Becoming VAT registered has lost him a lot of work through higher prices, some customers just havent come back. He's now being faced with a huge tax bill, and a VAT bill for approx 2-3 years previous.
Clearly not what he was supposed to be paying though The current accountant is employed by him to try and resolve the matter, he is paying for this. Hence the annoyance at the lack of advice forthcoming The most irritating thing is...you owe HMRC millions, they waive at the drop of a hat.
If you're a mere mortal, they're quite happy to push you over the edge into bankruptcy and they get nothing, or perhaps worse.
And as I said, whilst they have been very helpful in dealing with HMRC and sorting the books.
They have offered no help or advice whatsoever when it comes to how he might actually pay what is owed, other than "you just have to pay it"Which when it's looking to be in the region of 30-40k all told....well, most people dont keep that sort of money in their back pockets.
Get a consultation with an insolvency practitioner.
Will probably cost a few hundred pound but will be worth it.
Simply saying I didnt know what I had to do or I never got round to it doesnt cut the mustard with HMRC.