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Fix MTD issues and errors in QuickBooks Online

SOLVEDby QuickBooks1729Updated September 06, 2023

This page will explain what you should do if you're seeing an error message or having issues when connecting to Making Tax Digital (MTD) in QuickBooks Online.

When you attempt to connect your QuickBooks Online account with Making Tax Digital (MTD) to submit a return, it is important to check the email confirmation from HMRC. This email will confirm whether or not your connection has been successful–this can take up to 72 hours.

The email will have your new MTD credentials which you'll need to use to set up the MTD feature in QuickBooks.

Note: All VAT-registered businesses should now be signed up for MTD for VAT. HMRC will sign up all remaining businesses to MTD for VAT automatically unless they are exempt or have applied for exemption.

Be sure to check your spam/junk folder. If you've been waiting longer than 72 hours, we recommend that you contact HMRC.

Your VAT registration number should match the one you use in QuickBooks. If you don't use the same VAT registration number, you may face difficulties in submitting your return. Be sure to check this in your VAT settings before submitting your MTD return.

When setting up MTD in QuickBooks Online, it is essential to use the correct credentials. Only use your official MTD credentials provided by HMRC via email. Do not attempt to use any other login information as this may cause issues with authentication and could lead to delays in submitting your VAT return or possibly even failure of submission altogether.

If you're an accountant or bookkeeper, make sure you set up an agent services account to use HMRC's MTD services–this is different to your HMRC online services for agents account.

If you can't submit return under MTD, it may be because the MTD feature isn't set up yet in QuickBooks Online. You'll need to provide your HMRC credentials (Government Gateway ID) in order to link your QuickBooks Online account with HMRC's MTD service.

Keeping your VAT accounting period up to date will help ensure that all returns are accurately filed and submitted on time. This error may occur for several reasons:

  1. The VAT registration period in QuickBooks Online doesn't match what HMRC has.
  2. You may have an open period that is marked as 'filed' in QuickBooks or with HMRC system, during which time you aren't required to file any tax returns.
  3. You have a pending or unsuccessful VAT return submission (this will have an amber or red icon next to it ). To fix this:
    1. Go to Taxes.
    2. Next to the return, select Go for it and follow the instructions. Do not select Resubmit return for a rejected VAT filing. QuickBooks will try to resubmit the same way as the original filing.
  4. You may have a VAT Return that is over a year old. Mark the period as "filed" to receive the correct dates from HMRC and file your last submitted return, then close your books.
  5. You submitted a late return and marked it as filed in QuickBooks. Use the Help icon in QuickBooks to reach Support.

The error message ‘CLIENT_OR_AGENT_NOT_AUTHORISED’ is one of the most common issues encountered when using MTD services in QuickBooks Online. This message may appear if:

  • You need to reauthorise the connection between QuickBooks Online and HMRC.
  • You haven't entered the correct credentials for MTD provided by HMRC when setting up MTD in QuickBooks.
  • The VAT registration number in QuickBooks doesn't match HMRC's records. If you've been issued a new VAT registration number, you'll need to update this in your VAT settings.

If you're an accountant/bookkeeper:

If you see the error message 'taxReturnInvalidMTDEndDate', you may be trying to file your VAT return before the tax period end date. To fix this, make sure you submit your return at the end of the tax period.

There are 3 other reasons you may see this error, try these:

  • The MTD for VAT feature isn't enabled in QuickBooks Online. To fix this, set up the MTD feature in QuickBooks Online before you submit a VAT return.
  • You don't have permission to submit a VAT return. If your MTD connection was set up by an accountant or member of your team and you didn't enter your own details, reach out to the person who set up the connection.

If you're an accountant/bookkeeper:

  • Make sure you're using the correct agents services account to use HMRC's MTD services.
  • You may need to link your clients to your agent services account for MTD.

If you’re having issues connecting to MTD in QuickBooks Online, one of the first steps to fixing the issue could be simply checking if you have any open obligations with HMRC. If you have any open obligations, HMRC will not process your return until those obligations are met. To avoid this, make sure that you have no outstanding obligations before submitting your return.

You can log into your HMRC online account to view all of your open obligations – including any taxes due – and make sure that everything is up to date and settled before attempting to submit a return through MTD again.

You may also need to enable yourself to send submissions to HMRC for the company file you are using. This can be done by going into the settings for your company file.

Think there might be a site-wide problem? The first place to look is the QuickBooks status page. Here you'll find real-time reports of any outages when they happen, and when they’ve been resolved. You can also subscribe to get incident updates if you wish.

We're here to help
If you have questions about MTD, or need help getting connected or fixing an error, let us know. Sign in to QuickBooks and start a discussion with a qualified QuickBooks Online expert in our community.

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