Latest News

VAT and Insolvency Update

HMRC have updated their Public Notice to confirm that VAT on realisation of taxable stocks and assets remaining at the date of insolvency should normally be accounted for on post-appointment VAT returns, including the final VAT return.

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Compound Interest Appeal wins at the High Court

The High Court has ruled in favour of littlewoods Plc that as a principle of EU law a taxapayer is entitled to the repayment of compound interest following a claim for VAT that has been overpaid as a result of a mistake by HMRC. Although the decision of the High Court is good news, this is by no means the end of the road for this issue as HMRC have already advised that they will will seek to appeal this decision to the Court of Appeal.

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VAT training

The start of a new financial year is often a good time to take stock of how a business is dealing with its VAT and Duty affairs. Too often businesses and their advisors miss out on relatively easy to achieve VAT savings or create needless VAT exposures. The main cause of this is not usually due to lack of care but in fact due to a simple lack of knowledge or a basic misunderstanding of VAT and Duty rules. We can assist businesses and their advisors by delivering tailored VAT training courses specific to the needs of the individual business. Our courses can cover the essential VAT basics and/or issues and opportunities specific to the sector that the business is working within.

Over the last year we have delivered VAT training to a diverse range of businesses and organisations including:

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2014 Budget Impact on VAT Land and Property

One of the most complex areas of VAT is the law applying to land and property transactions and construction/conversion services. There were no changes to the VAT law for land and property in the 2014 budget, however, one of the budget highlights was the government’s focus on funding to improve the infrastructure of the UK including funding for new social housing, a new ‘garden city’ on brownfield at Ebbsfleet, and the release of more government owned land for redevelopment. Whilst this does not immediately shout ‘think VAT’ this is likely to have VAT consequences for a number of businesses and entities.

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Avoid paying too much VAT - Get the Basics Right

Whilst VAT is a complex tax, many businesses unfortunately suffer VAT assessments due to relatively simple errors that can prove costly if not rectified at an early stage. The recent Tribunal decision in the case of Panesar Enterprise UK Limited highlights this fact. The business and a related company were Burger King franchises that used a software package recommended by Burger King. The package was set up to differentiate between standard rated supplies and zero rated supplies, unfortunately for the businesses concerned the systems had been incorrectly programmed so that the wrong VAT rate was picked up for some of the ‘product sales’.

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Zero rating for listed building construction of a garage

Although the zero-rating relief for approved alterations on Listed Buildings was removed in the Budget 2012, we are still seeing a number of issues in respect of properties where the work commenced prior to 2012. A recent VAT appeal was allowed whereby the Appellant, Mr Ian Owen, contracted for a large garage to be constructed. The planning consent was for the erection of a garage. However, the Tribunal Judge ruled that the house was being altered by the addition of an extension, which in this case happened to be a garage and the works were thus regarded as a zero-rated extension.

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VAT treatment of Bitcoin and similar cryptocurrencies

HMRC have issued a Brief to confirm the provisional VAT treatment of bitcoin and similar cryptocurrencies, which is as follows:

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Changes to Place of Supply Rules

As many of you are aware the place of supply rules for B2C telecommunications, broadcasting and e-services will change from 1 January 2015.

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Changes to VAT Registration and Deregistration Thresholds

HMRC have announced the changes to the VAT registration and deregistration thresholds.

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VAT Changes to Prompt Payment Discounts

HMRC have announced changes to the VAT rules regarding prompt payment discounts.

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