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Litigation privilege and tax advice—the sole or dominant purpose? (Financial Reporting Council Ltd v Frasers Group plc)

Published on: 22 October 2020
Published by: LexisPSL
  • Litigation privilege and tax advice—the sole or dominant purpose? (Financial Reporting Council Ltd v Frasers Group plc)
  • What are the practical implications of this case?
  • What was the background?
  • What did the court decide?
  • Case details

Article summary

Dispute Resolution analysis: The court concluded that three separate reports which had been prepared to provide advice and recommendations concerning the implementation of a new VAT structure in 2015 could not be said to have been produced for the sole or dominant purpose of litigation then in contemplation. The litigation then in contemplation arose of a VAT structure designed and implemented in 2010 which had attracted the attention of foreign tax authorities. As a result of that attention, and fearing litigation would ensue, a revised VAT structure had been designed and implemented in 2015. Advice received in relation to that 2015 structure could not be said to have been produced with the sole or dominant purpose of contemplated litigation arising out of the 2010 arrangements. Rather, the purpose of the 2015 documents was to achieve a particular taxation result. As such, the documents did not attract litigation privilege. Written by Christopher Snell, barrister, at New Square Chambers. or take a trial to read the full analysis.

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