• Last edited on: 16 November 2020

United Kingdom

Examples of compliant cXML invoices and credit notes for the United Kingdom.


  • When setting up your remit-to-address , your VAT ID must be in the following format: GB 999.9999.99 (999)
  • All tax amounts must include the alternateAmount and alternateCurrency attributes. The alternate currency must be set to GBP . See Providing Amounts in Local Currency for more info.
  • When adding a tax exempt line or creating a reverse change invoice, add this element to your cXML: <Description xml:lang="en-US">Line level exemption reason</Description>
  • Include the <Description> element immediately after <tax-amount>. It's required when the TaxDetails category contains an exemption. See Add Tax Exemption Details to an Invoice for more info.

Additionally, Credit Notes must include the following information:

  • The original invoice number must be referenced using the DocumentReference tag.
  • The original invoice date extrinsic must be added.

Invoice content requirements

Invoice Content Field Mandatory/Conditional Comments
Supplier Name Mandatory
Supplier Address Mandatory
Supplier VAT ID Mandatory
Supplier Fiscal Rep. Name Conditional
Supplier Fiscal Rep. Address Conditional
Supplier Fiscal Rep VAT ID Conditional
Nature of Tax Mandatory
Buyer Name Mandatory
Buyer Address Mandatory
Buyer VAT ID Conditional Required on the invoice where the Buyer is VAT registered
Buyer Fiscal Rep Name Conditional
Buyer Fiscal Rep Address Conditional
Buyer Fiscal Rep VAT ID Conditional
Invoice Date Mandatory
Date of Supply Mandatory
Invoice Number Mandatory A sequential number,based on one or more series, which uniquely identifies the invoice
Tax Law Reference Conditional

The tax law reference will be required:

- where the supply is an exempt or zero-rated supply

The tax law reference should be either a reference to the appropriate provision of EC Council Directive 2006/112/EC or the corresponding provision of VATA 1994 or any indication that the supply is exempt or zero-rated as appropriate. For these purposes, an exempt supply is a supply that, if made in the UK, would be exempt under VATA 1994, Sch 9. The way in which the intra-EU exempt or zero-rated treatment is referenced on an invoice is a matter for the business and not for HMRC, but examples of acceptable indications include • Exempt supply/Exempt supply for VAT purposes/This is an exempt supply. • Zero-rated intra-EU supply/This is an intra-Union supply/Intra-Union supply subject to VAT in the country of acquisition.

Currency Mandatory
Tax Amount in Local Currency Conditional The tax amount should be shown in GBP where the invoice is in a foreign currency
Original Invoice Number (For Credit Notes) Conditional Where the doc is a credit note
Original Invoice Date (For Credit Notes) Conditional Where the doc is a credit note
Credit Reason (For Credit Notes) Conditional Where the doc is a credit note
Net Total Mandatory
Gross Total Conditional
Quantity Mandatory
Description Mandatory
Taxable Amount Mandatory
VAT Rate Conditional
VAT amount Conditional
Unit Price Mandatory
Discount Amount Conditional
Discount Terms Conditional
Early Payment Discount Conditional
Early Payment Discount Terms Conditional
Reference to reverse charge Conditional The principle of the r everse charge rule is that it shifts the liability to account for the VAT on a supply from the supplier to the buyer.
Cash accounting scheme Conditional If you receive payment in coins or notes from a customer you must, if asked, endorse the customer’s copy of your sales invoice with the amount that they have paid and the date it was paid. Similarly, if you pay a supplier in coins or notes, you must make sure that they endorse your copy of the purchase invoice with the amount you have paid and the date it was paid.
Margin Scheme Reference Conditional The profit margin method for travel agents, second-hand goods, works of art or collector's items and antiques is applied

Extrinsic fields

The following extrinsics are required to send a compliance-assured British invoice. You may require additional extrinsics specific to your industry or billing situation:

  • ExchangeRate

See Adding Extrinsics to Your Invoice for more info.

Example invoices