VAT Cases & News

Summaries of interesting VAT cases for the SME owner.

HMRC have released 'Revenue and Customs Brief 15 (2021): Repayment of VAT to overseas business not established in the EU and not registered in the UK'. Certificates required from non-UK authorities by HMRC to authorise refunds can now be provided after the normal due date in exceptional circumstances relating to COVID-19.

In Reverend Jane Taylor Trading as Mill House Retreats v HMRC [2021] TC8315/V, the First Tier Tribunal (FTT) found that the provision of spiritual retreats was not VAT exempt. Welfare services were being provided but Church of England supervision did not make them state-regulated.

In HMRC v Laurence Donnelly [2021] UKUT 0296, the Upper Tribunal (UT) determined that a point agreed between the taxpayer and HMRC was not open to review by the First Tier Tribunal (FTT). The FTT decision which ignored this agreed fact was overturned, VAT penalties were due and the proprietor was personally liable for them.

HMRC have published a summary of responses to their Call for evidence, ‘Simplifying the VAT Land Exemption’, which closed earlier this year.

In Greenspace Limited v HMRC [2021] UKUT 0290, the Upper Tribunal confirmed that insulated roof panels were roofing products and not insulation. Unlike insulation that could be separately attached to a roof, the panels formed the roof. The supply of panels did not qualify for a reduced rate of VAT.

In Mandarin Consulting Limited v HMRC [2021] UKUT 0292 (TCC), the Upper Tribunal (UT) found that a company supplying career coaching services was unable to demonstrate that all of its students were usually resident outside of the EU, meaning that UK VAT applied.

In Swiss Dawn Consultants Ltd v HMRC [2021] TC08311, a VAT registered taxpayer misunderstood the workings of the VAT flat rate scheme and calculated VAT on net sales. HMRC had no choice but to make best judgement assessments to recover unpaid VAT.


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