Single or multiple supplies ― application of Card Protection Plan and Levob Verzekeringen

By Tolley
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The following Value Added Tax guidance note by Tolley provides comprehensive and up to date tax information covering:

  • Single or multiple supplies ― application of Card Protection Plan and Levob Verzekeringen
  • Background
  • Terminology
  • Why is Card Protection Plan such an important case?
  • Why is Levob Verzekeringen BV such an important case?
  • Questions
  • Indicators of a single supply
  • Multiple supply indicators
  • Supply Splitting ― anti-avoidance
  • Relevant case law
  • Applying the above principles

This guidance note provides an overview of when supplies can be treated as a single composite supply or a multiple supply for VAT purposes, and it should be read in conjunction with the Multiple supplies ― output tax apportionment and Single or multiple supplies ― relevant case law guidance notes.

Background

This guidance note provides an overview of HMRC’s opinion of what it believes constitutes a single or multiple supply for VAT purposes as a result of the lead CJEU decisions in the cases Card Protection Plan (CPP) and Levob Verzekeringen (Levob).

Card Protection Plan Ltd  (C-349/96) [1999] 2 AC 601 (subscription sensitive); VATSC80000

CPP and Levob are landmark cases and have helped to provide a clearer indication of what would constitute a single composite supply for VAT purposes where a number of differing supplies are made and these are bundled into one product offering to the customer. This is a contentious area of VAT and has been the subject of many court cases. Historically, HMRC has not produced any guidance on what it believes constitutes a single or multiple supply for VAT purposes, and it considers that each transaction must be considered on a case-by-case basis, which has led to a number of differing opinions on whether it can be treated as a single or multiple supply for VAT purposes.

It is possible for a transaction to consist of more than one component, and if these components were supplied separately, it is possible that they could have different VAT liabilities. Therefore, it is important for the business to determine whether they are making a single composite supply where all of the supplies made would have the same VAT liability as the main supply or a multiple supply where the VAT liability of each supply would need to be determined. If a multiple supply is made, the business will

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