I've worked for two days as a freelancer for a company in the UK.

They've asked me for the invoice, but I see on the internet that UK invoices require a VAT number. I don't have a VAT number as I'm unregistered and I've always worked for a company as an employee prior to freelancing.

Can I prepare the invoice without that number, as this job can be considered an incidental/once-only service? Or should I register with an umbrella company?

  • You did not state which country is your tax residency. If you are outside of UK (and in EU), you very often need to be registered at least as a sole trader and report that you provided the service to other EU country based company.
    – Radek
    Oct 16, 2015 at 22:28

1 Answer 1


In the UK, domestic work is VAT-exempt if you don't meet the income threshold for VAT (currently £82,000).

If they ask for your VAT number for tax purposes, simply state that you are not registered for VAT and do not charge VAT. If they complain, they have a mediocre accounting department as this is the very first section on VAT in almost all documents describing it:

You can only charge VAT if your business is registered for VAT.


So no, you must not add VAT on your domestic UK invoices to businesses unless you have a VAT number. On the invoice, state "VAT Not Applicable" or something to that effect.

There is also no need to register with an umbrella company (agency) for this purpose, either, unless you would like to use their insurance, company name, etc.

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