Help from experienced Bookkeepers



I’ve just been filling out the SVA form to join as a registered VA (yay!) and came across the section about a ‘MLR registration number for HMRC’ to be a bookkeeper and pretty worried about it now!

Maybe naively I have not come across this in my research for this type of work before and wanted someone to talk to about if I do actually need it and what else I may have missed, so I have peace of mind going forward :frowning:

I do currently do invoice management, budgeting, XERO data entry and finance research for a couple of clients, and one of those wants me to start making payments on his behalf soon.

I’m ICO registered, have insurance for bookkeeping and contracts with each of my clients.

Thank you for any advice you can give :slight_smile:


I’ve just found this article:

So thank you SVA for writing that! Which I think has cleared up that I do need to register, so will go do that now… but do I need anything else?

Thank you


But, I’ve also just found this on the HMRC which would mean I don’t need it?

If you’re an accountancy service provider you must register with HMRC unless:

  • all your customers are themselves supervised by HMRC or a professional body

Which my client are…

This stuff is quite unclear… :thinking:


Hi Georgina,

As I understand it, you need the register for AML with HMRC if more than 5% of your work is in accounting services/bookkeeping, AND your annual business turnover is more than £30k.

The special dispensation is for VAs who do very minor bookkeeping tasks for clients, as part of their general VA duties (where all work will be overseen and checked by a qualified and AML registered accountant), no more than 5% of your total business turnover applies to accountancy service activities, and your annual business turnover is under £30k.

To get this, you must email HMRC, and they will send an acknowledgement, and you just keep these emails for your records.

You’re also not allowed to advertise that you offer bookkeeping or accounting services if you are not AML registered (AFAIK).

I know I’ve pretty much just rehashed what the article says, but I think it makes a bit more sense!


Thank you very much, that has helped :slight_smile:

I’ve emailed HMRC as I meet almost all of those exemption but my invoice and budgeting stuff is 50% of my workload. I also only work 2 days a week and will not be earning £30k this year!

I feel very silly not knowing this before, but just working on getting it all sorted…