Weekly case highlights ― 6 April 2021

Produced by Tolley
Weekly case highlights ― 6 April 2021

The following Owner-Managed Businesses guidance note Produced by Tolley provides comprehensive and up to date tax information covering:

  • Weekly case highlights ― 6 April 2021
  • VAT
  • Balhousie Holdings Ltd v HMRC (Scotland)
  • Saint-Gobain Building Distribution Ltd v HMRC
  • Customs duties
  • Build-A-Bear Workshop UK Holdings v HMRC
  • Private client
  • Mr Nicholas John Ware v Mrs Constance Wiltshire Ware

VAT

Balhousie Holdings Ltd v HMRC (Scotland)

This is an important Supreme Court decision on the clawback of VAT which arises when a taxpayer who has had the benefit of a zero-rated supply of a building used as care home makes a disposal of its ‘entire interest’ in the building. Does the clawback rule apply when the person finances the acquisition of the building by way of sale and leaseback? In other words, although the person immediately leases back the building, is the sale taken in isolation, a disposal of the entire interest? This ought to be, in the words of Lord Briggs, who gave the leading judgement ‘when all is said and done, a very short point of construction about the non-technical wording of an apparently simple provision in a taxing statute’, but it has taken a journey all of the way to the Supreme Court to determine that the answer is ‘no’. A sale and leaseback is not the disposal of an entire interest and therefore there is no clawback. The analysis is beyond the scope of this note but all involved in VAT and property will need to study the judgement in fine detail.

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