What is an invoice and what should it include?
If you sell goods or services to customers, it’s likely that you’ll also have to invoice those customers for the work you’ve done. But what information are you actually required to include on your invoices?
- You must clearly display the word ‘invoice’
- A unique identification number
- Your company name, address and contact information. If you are a limited company, this should be the full company name as it appears on the certificate of incorporation.
- If you decide to put names of your directors on your invoices, you must include the names of all directors.
- The company name and address of the customer you’re invoicing
- A clear description of what you’re charging for
- The date the goods or service were provided (supply date)
- The date of the invoice
- The amount(s) being charged
- VAT amount if applicable
- The total amount owed
- VAT registration number (if applicable)
If both you and the customer are registered for VAT, invoicing is a legal requirement and copies should be kept with your books and records for at least 6 years if you’re a limited company or LLP, and 5 years if you’re a sole trader or partnership.
Please note: This article is a commentary on general principles and should not be interpreted as advice for your specific situation.