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Tax – VAT

VAT reverse charge – postponed

 A useful article analyses the potential implications of the reverse charge on VAT, which was due to be introduced for specified construction services in October 2019 but which has now been postponed until October 2020. The domestic reverse charge, if introduced, will make significant changes to the way that VAT is collected and from whom.
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VAT and disbursements – Law Society guidance

The Law Society has issued a detailed new practice note ‘VAT Treatment of Disbursements and Expenses’ (8 October 2019) following two recent cases in which the concept of disbursements has been narrowly interpreted. A disbursement is a payment that a business makes on behalf of its client and is outside the scope of VAT. The advantage is that many clients cannot reclaim VAT so not charging VAT to a client will keep their overall costs down.
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Refund entitlement – taxable amount not reduced

In their monthly VAT update, EY report on a case that will be interesting to lawyers as the facts involved an SDLT avoidance scheme (perhaps unsurprisingly, the four companies involved are in liquidation or administration). 
 
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VAT on professional fees - litigation

In its weekly VAT round up, EY comments on the FTT case which considered the deduction of VAT on professional fees in bringing litigation.

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Making Tax Digital – update

We reported in our March 2019 edition (p34) about the requirement for VAT registered businesses with taxable turnover above the VAT registration threshold (currently £85,000) to keep records in digital form and file their return online. 
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LeO – VAT and costs information

We have reported above that LeO has issued updated costs guidance. Costs complaints often involve disputes above whether VAT was included in the price. The updated guidance states that VAT is often shown separately to the legal fees. It will help clients if the total figure is confirmed at the outset in the client care letter. If this figure is not clear to the client and a complaint is made, LeO is likely to find fault and would possibly hold the firm to the lower figure as this is the sum the client reasonably expected to pay for the service.

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VAT Order – construction services

The VAT (s55A) (Specified Services and Excepted Supplies) Order 2019 comes into effect in relation to supplies made on or after 1 October 2019.

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Making tax digital – VAT

Making tax digital for VAT requires VAT registered businesses with taxable turnover above the VAT registration threshold (currently £85,000) to keep records in digital form and file their VAT returns using software which can keep and maintain the records specified in the regulations. 
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L&T – the basics

A summary of the basic rules on VAT and commercial property:

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Most-read articles

Civil partnerships – heterosexual couples
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
The Civil Partnership (Opposite-sex Couples) Regulations 2019 are in force as of 2 December 2019 and permit heterosexual couples to enter into civil partnerships. Read more...
VAT reverse charge – postponed
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
 A useful article analyses the potential implications of the reverse charge on VAT, which was due to be introduced for specified construction services in October 2019 but which has now been... Read more...
Electronic communications – practitioners beware
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
 A useful article by Hardwicke Chambers reminds practitioners of the risks of a hasty or ill thought out email or social media post. The writer cites a situation where an email from a solicitor to... Read more...
Jurisdictional challenges – the basics
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
An article considers a recent SC case in which litigants have been criticised for the way in which jurisdictional challenges are being conducted. The case concerned a group of some 1,800 Zambian... Read more...
LiPs – tips for dealing
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
Litigants in person (LiPs) are on the increase due in part to legal aid cuts and an increase in the small claims limit. Maintaining the balance of treating LiPs fairly, while also acting in the best... Read more...
‘Elevation’ – front and rear of building
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
 A 99-year lease contained a covenant prohibiting T from making any alterations to the elevation or external decoration of the property. Read more...
L changing locks – an act of surrender?
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
There are various ways in which a leasehold estate in land may come to an end. One of these is surrender by operation of law. Sometimes the surrender of a lease does not take place by deed but is... Read more...
Beneficial ownership – reminder of key points
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
Practitioners who advise co-owners on the acquisition of property will find a recent article reviewing the case law on beneficial ownership very useful. The key points are: Read more...
Sanctions – vexatious litigant
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
In long-running divorce and financial remedy proceedings, R was found to be an ‘exceptionally vexatious litigant’ throughout. Mostyn J made a general civil restraint order and a protection from... Read more...
Disciplinary process – external bodies
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
 A useful article considers two recent cases on the issues that can arise for employers carrying out a disciplinary procedure when an external body becomes involved eg a regulatory body, police, a... Read more...

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