Billing & Accounts


Account Number
Every customer has an account number, this usually has eight digits and appears on every document you receive from us.

Customer Roles
On most transactions we deal with a single person or organisation, however sometimes we deal with more than one person or organisation, for example where we sell goods to one person but ship them to another.  These roles are identified on our billing documents as follows:

Sold To
The person or organisation that places an order for goods or services.

Bill To
The person or organisation that receives the invoice for goods or services.

Ship To
The person or organisation that receives the goods.

The person or organisation that pays the invoice (statements are sent to the Payer).

Invoice / credit note number
Please quote the invoice or credit note number in any correspondence, especially when making payments.

Date & tax point
The date this invoice / credit note was raised .

Payment due date
The settlement date of the invoice.

VAT registration number
Our documents show both the Thomson Reuters (Professional) UK Limited VAT number and your VAT number (if you have supplied it).

Customer order ref
Your order reference if you supplied one.

Product ID
The unique product reference, which in most cases will be the publication’s ISBN or ISSN.

Product details
A description of the product to which the invoice applies.

Details of any discount applicable for the order.

All documents specify the currency in use.

VAT analysis
How VAT has been calculated.

Global order ID
Identifies your order to other Thomson Reuters companies that form part of the supply chain.

Terms of trading
The Terms and Conditions that apply to every order you place with us.

Credit management telephone numbers
UK and International Credit Management telephone numbers have changed.  UK customers will be charged at their local rate

Remittance advice
Please return this with your payment

Statement description
Indicates the nature of the customer document: whether it is a query and the reason for the query

Statement date
The date on which the statement was generated.  Payments received or charges made after this date will not be shown.  The items on the statement have dates showing when they were created

Statement analysis of balance
Outstanding balances shown by month due

How can I get a copy invoice?
If you would like a copy of an invoice please email  Alternatively, you can view and download these online with My Account self-service.

How do I pay my invoice?
You can pay your invoice by debit or credit card, BACS or by cheque, details are below:

1. Debit or credit card

We accept:

  • Visa
  • MasterCard
  • American Express

The quickest way to pay is via our online self-service system My Account self-service.  Alternatively, please call +44 (0) 1264 388550 to make your payment.  You will need to tell us your invoice number(s), renewal reference number(s) or proforma reference number(s). 


You can make payment directly to our bank using BACS.  Our bank details are displayed clearly at the bottom of our invoices, please make your payment to the bank details specified on the invoice.  

To process your BACS payment, we need the following information when you pay:

Your Customer Account Number

  • This usually has eight digits, and appears on every document you receive from us.

The reference for the item you are paying

  • Invoice number
  • Renewal reference
  • Proforma reference

Paying for multiple items by BACS

Please send us a remittance advice giving the references (invoice, renewal or proforma numbers) of the items for which you are paying.  Send the remittance advice by email to or by fax to +44 (0)20 7393 8051.  Give the total amount paid, the date it was sent and the bank that the payment is coming from.

3. Cheques

Cheques should be made payable to Thomson Reuters.  Please give the references (invoice, renewal or proforma numbers) of the items for which you are paying.

Send your cheque to:

Thomson Reuters Professional UK Ltd
c/o Citibank European Lockbox
PO Box 62449
E14 1HH

How do I check the balance on my account?
If you would like to check the balance on your account, please contact our Customer Services team quoting the account number(s).  Alternatively, you can check online with My Account self-service.

Westlaw invoices are generated on the first day of each month in arrears, for annual and monthly contracts.  You will usually receive your invoice during the second week of the month. 

Lawtel invoices are generated overnight after an order has been processed, as long as credit checks are satisfactory and that items are in stock. 

Customs issues

There are two issues that arise from time to time:

  • If the despatch note or covering documentation does not specifically state that the item is tax exempt, it could get held up until the tax is paid, or until the Customs department are given proof that the item is tax exempt. 
  • Some Customs departments add handling charges, which are sporadic, and which vary in amount.  These charges must be paid by the customer; they are not charges made by either Sweet & Maxwell or their delivery agent.

What is VAT?

VAT is a tax on goods or services sold in the European Union.  Where VAT is charged, it will usually included in the price of the goods or services you buy.  Businesses that are registered for VAT can usually reclaim it.

Who pays VAT?

  • All customers in the UK (including the Isle of Man)
  • All customers in the Irish Republic (we are registered for VAT in Ireland - see below)
  • EU customers who have NOT supplied a valid VAT number

Who does not pay VAT?

  • All customers outside the EU
  • EU customers who HAVE supplied a valid VAT number
  • All customers in the Channel Islands
  • All customers in Gibraltar
  • UK customers who can supply a valid HMRC VAT exemption certificate
  • Irish customers who can supply a valid Irish Revenue VAT exemption certificate

What is the VAT rate for your products?

There is no VAT on books, journals and looseleafs although non-print components, such as CDs inserted into these print products, will attract VAT.  You will be charged VAT on other products, details are shown in this table.

ProductVAT rate
Books 0%
Journals 0%
Looseleafs 0%
Directories 0%
eBooks 20%
Online services 20%
CDs 20%
Conferences/Courses 20%
Directory Adverts 20%
JCT Contracts 20%

Sweet & Maxwell’s UK VAT registration number

Our UK VAT registration number is GB 900 548 743.

VAT for Irish customers

We are registered for VAT in Ireland as well as the UK, therefore Irish customers pay Irish VAT charges.

Our Irish VAT registration number is IE 951 387 4E, where we are registered as Thomson Reuters (Legal) Limited.

What is the rate of VAT in Ireland?

VAT rates for Irish customers vary depending on the type of product, as shown in this table.

Product VAT rate
Archbold 0%
Bulletin 0%
Hardback book 0%
ISM paper 0%
Journal bound volume 0%
Looseleaf content replacement 0%
Looseleaf release 0%
Multi-volume looseleaf set 0%
Paperback book 0%
Paperback supplement 0%
Replacement binders 0%
Set of books 0%
Single volume looseleaf 0%
White Book 0%
Catalogue 13.5%
Directory 13.5%
Document 13.5%
Journal binder 13.5%
Journal issue 13.5%
Journal offprint 13.5%
Magazine 13.5%
Newsletter 13.5%
UK conference 20%
3.5" disk 21%
Advertising 21%
Advice line access 21%
Book/CD pack 21%
Book/disk pack 21%
CD-Rom 21%
CD-Rom + online access 21%
Conference pack 21%
Directory entry 21%
E-mail 21%
Forms 21%
IE Conference 21%
Journal + online access 21%
Journal/CD pack 21%
Looseleaf + CD pack 21%
Looseleaf, CD and book 21%
Network licence 21%
Online password 21%
Online service 21%
Seminar 21%
Service 21%
Software unit or token 21%

Are charities exempt from VAT?

Charities are not exempt from VAT, other than on advertisements in which case they must supply a declaration (visit HMRC for details).