One of our objectives in publishing these practical and commercial weekly tax tips is that you hear about aspects of the UK tax system you weren’t aware of, or had forgotten. This week we report a challenge by HMRC to the CGT treatment when a company purchases its own shares, and a new EU customs code. We also have a reminder of the deadline for reclaiming VAT incurred in other EU countries.

This is an
extract from our topical tax tips newsletter dated 22 September
2016 (5 days before we publish an extract on this blog). You can obtain future issues by registering here>>>

Overseas VAT claims
When a VAT registered business sends its employees or directors on business trips to other EU countries, those individuals will incur expenses such as: hotel accommodation, restaurant meals and car hire. The VAT element of those expenses can’t be reclaimed on the business’s UK VAT return, because the VAT incurred is overseas VAT not UK VAT.

The UK business can only claim a refund of the overseas VAT by way of an online claim made through the HMRC VAT online service. You can do this on behalf of your client.

The refund claims can be made for periods of not less than three months, in which case the minimum claim is €400 or equivalent in local currency. Where one claim is submitted for the calendar year the minimum permitted claim is €50, or equivalent in local currency. Claims for the calendar year to 31 December 2015 must be submitted by 30 September 2016, late claims are not permitted.

Don’t assume that every EU country has the same rules about non-refundable VAT as the UK. For example, in the UK VAT on business entertaining expenses can’t be reclaimed; in other countries a block on reclaiming road fuel or hotel accommodation may apply. You may need to research the VAT rules for each country for which you submit a claim, but the instructions with the online claim will help with this.

Generally, you won’t be required to submit invoices for the expenses with the refund claim, but those invoices must be retained. Some member states will request a scan of invoices with values of €1000 or more, or more than €250 for fuel.

 It takes up to four months for the refund claim to be processed, but if a query is raised the processing can take up to another four months. If the claim is paid more than 10 days following the end of the processing period, interest must be paid by the refunding state. Once again we have VAT experts in the Network who could help here.

This is an
extract from our topical tax tips newsletter dated 22 September
2016 (5 days before we publish an extract on this blog). You can obtain future issues by registering here>>> 
 
The
full newsletter contained the remainder of this item plus links to related source material and the
other two topical, timely and commercial tax tips. We’ve been
publishing this newsletter weekly since 2007; it’s clearly written
and focused on precisely what accountants in general practice need to
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