VAT-registered businesses with an annual turnover above £85,000 are being urged to sign up for Making Tax Digital (MTD) before the scheme's first quarterly filing deadline.

MTD for VAT became law on 1 April 2019, requiring most VAT-registered firms to keep digital records and send returns using software.

For those with quarterly VAT periods that started on or after 1 April, the first deadline to submit a return using MTD-compatible software will be on 7 August 2019.

HMRC has issued a reminder for those businesses to register for the scheme before the 7 August deadline, and before 27 July if they're paying by direct debit.

The tax authority said more than 600,000 businesses have signed up so far, and 400,000 MTD for VAT submissions have been successfully made.

Businesses in the agriculture sector have been among the fastest to sign up to the scheme, with around 50% currently registered.

Meanwhile, the financial sector has been one of the slowest, with only 25% of businesses in this sector having signed up.

Theresa Middleton, director of MTD at HMRC, said:

"Now is the time for businesses with an August quarterly filing deadline to sign up and join the hundreds of thousands already experiencing the benefits of MTD.

"During this first year we won't be issuing filing or record-keeping penalties to businesses doing their best to comply."

We can help you file VAT returns under MTD.