Produced by Tolley
  • 22 Dec 2021 18:40

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

  • Printed matter and e-publications ― e-publications
  • When can e-publications be zero-rated?
  • Could e-publications be zero-rated prior to 1 May 2020?
  • What does ‘supplied electronically’ mean?
  • When is a supply wholly or predominantly devoted to advertising?
  • When is a supply wholly or predominantly devoted to audio or visual content?
  • What isn’t covered by the zero-rate for e-publications?
  • Does the payment model affect the zero rate for e-publications?
  • Practical points ― e-publications

Printed matter and e-publications ― e-publications

This guidance note examines the zero-rating which extends to the supply of electronic publications (with effect from 1 May 2020).

For in depth commentary on the legislation and case law in this area, see De Voil Indirect Tax Service V4.273C.

For an overview of the VAT status of printed matter and e-publications more broadly, see the Printed matter and e-publications ― overview guidance note.

When can e-publications be zero-rated?

From 1 May 2020, it is possible to zero-rate publications which are supplied electronically and which fall into the following categories:

  1. books, booklets, brochures, pamphlets and leaflets (see the Printed matter and e-publications ― books, booklets, brochures, pamphlets and leaflets guidance note)

  2. newspapers, journals and periodicals (see the Printed matter and e-publications ― newspapers, journals, periodicals, picture and painting books guidance note)

  3. children’s picture books and painting books (see the Printed matter and e-publications ― newspapers, journals, periodicals, picture and painting books guidance note)

VATA 1994, Sch 8, Group 3, Item 7

However, the following are specifically excluded from the zero-rating for e-publications:

  1. publications which are wholly or predominantly devoted to advertising

  2. publications which consist wholly or predominantly of audio or video content

VATA 1994, Sch 8, Group 3, Item 7; Notice

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