We are covering quite a variety of topics featuring 'the home' this week and we continue to update the COVID-19 support tracker.

Judging by the huge number of comments posted on our site, people are having a range of issues with both the Employee Job Retention Scheme and Self-Employed Income Support Scheme. Sadly, we cannot respond to every query, although we try. In most cases, you need to contact HMRC. On that front, its helplines seem to be working quite well.

Back in the world of everyday tax, for subscribers we have been updating a series of guides covering tax and home as well as our director’s tax planning update. These are all definitely worth a good read through.

A couple of VAT cases caught my eye last week. One serves as a reminder of the six-month input VAT claim rule which often trips up associated entities making cross charges of services or goods. When one fails to settle up within 6 months, input VAT can be disallowed. Easy pickings for HMRC, although the case we report has a very strange twist.

The other VAT case I thought interesting is the one about a day planner. This is the sort of planner that you write in. Is such a planner a zero-rated book or standard-rated stationery? It transpires that the Upper Tribunal does not agree that HMRC’s VAT guide on the topic accords with relevant case law and has remitted the case back to the First Tier Tribunal (FTT) to be reconsidered. It also highlights the danger of making an appeal without fully researching your caselaw. VAT is a minefield in that respect.

The Supreme Court released its decision in the Fowler case. This concerns whether a deep-sea diver, who worked as an employee but is deemed self-employed for UK taxation, should be treated as an employee for the purposes of the UK’s double tax treaty with South Africa. It turns out that he was.

If you have any tax-specific queries, please post them up to our sister site, details are here: www.VtaxP.co.uk

Back soon 

Nichola Ross Martin FCA CTA (Fellow) Tax Director


Your Virtual Tax Partner® online PRACTICAL support for accountants, tax advisers BY accountants and tax advisers.

Quick news & guides (Freeview)

Advisory fuel rates from 1 June 2020
HMRC have published new advisory fuel rates for company car drivers which apply from 1 June 2020. Following recent drops in oil prices all rates, except those for fully electric cars, have been reduced.

COVID-19: Tracker
UPDATE: Start here to track the latest government measures and announcements aimed at supporting businesses and individuals during the pandemic. This time: updates on Employer Job Retention Scheme, Self Employed Scheme and Sick Pay claims portal.

Editor's Pick (subscribers)

Directors: Tax planning toolkit for 2020/21
This planner looks at a range of director tax issues, including company profit extraction. This year's toolkit, like all our maintained guides, is a rolling planner and is updated throughout the year. 

Furnished Holiday Letting
UPDATED: A detailed guide to Furnished Holiday Letting, what the conditions are, what reliefs are available and the impact of Coronavirus. 

PRR: Private Residence Relief
UPDATED: What is Private Residence Relief (PRR)? What are the qualifying conditions? Can you claim relief on two homes? How do you claim PRR? Can you claim PRR if you develop your garden? 

Tax Guides and Updates (subscribers)

IHT: Main Residence Nil Rate Band (RNRB)
UPDATED: What is the Main Residence Nil Rate band? When was it introduced? How does it work? Who can claim it?

SDLT: Residential property (dwellings), higher rate
UPDATED: A guide to the Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) higher rate charge on residential property, when it applies and what reliefs are available.

Case Update (Freeview) 

Supreme Court dives into tax treaty, diver is an employee
In Fowler v HMRC [2020] UKSC22, the Supreme Court found that a diver was an employee for the purposes of a double tax treaty and so subject to UK tax on his income.

Court of Appeal opts to allow deductions for EBT share scheme 
In HMRC v NCL Investments Limited, Smith & Williamson Corporate Services Limited [2020] EWCA Civ 663, the Court of Appeal dismissed HMRC’s appeal finding that the costs of issuing share options through an Employee Benefit Trust (EBT) were deductible.

VAT News & Cases

Is a day planner a book? Don't rely on HMRC’s VAT guide
In HMRC v Thorsteinn Gardarsson [2020] UKUT 0099, an appeal as to whether a day planner was a book or stationery has been remitted back to the First Tier Tribunal (FTT) to be remade. The FTT applied the wrong tests.

Input not disallowed as six-month rule not breached
In Premspec Group Ltd v HMRC [2019] TC01374, there was no disallowance of unpaid input VAT under the six-month rule for invoiced supplies between related companies. The relevant consideration was found to be payable later than the date of supply.

VAT treatment on fixed-odds betting terminals and gaming machines
Revenue & Customs Brief 5 (2020): VAT treatment on fixed-odds betting terminals (FOBTs) and gaming machines, explains HMRC’s position following the joint decision of the Upper Tribunal on 15 April 2020 of The Rank Group Ltd UT/2018/0149 and Done Brothers (Cash Betting) Ltd (and others) UT/2018/0150.

Virtual Tax Partner Toolkits (freeview)

Virtual Tax Partner © Tax Toolkit© Tax Toolkits
NEW: be a winner with our game-changing tax diagnostics tools. Sign up now.

  • Entrepreneurs' Relief: Sole traders: sale of a business, incorporation, sale of assets
  • Entrepreneurs' Relief: Company owners: rules for sales pre 29 October 2018, sales between 29 October 2018 and 5 April 2019 and after.
  • TAAR: closing your Personal service company? Will your final dividends be taxed as income?
  • Salary or dividend, or a mixture of both. Better to claim the Employers' Allowance?
  • Making Tax Digital for VAT: when do you need to join.

Tax Queries?

Virtual Tax Partner© Support
Have a tax query? Need a second option? Open a ticket and ask a question. A team of tax experts with a very wide range of expertise: covering direct and indirect tax, as well as accounting, R&D claims, reorganisations and much more. 

CPD for lunch 

Byte-sized chunks of CPD for subscribers


More at CPD Index

Missed last time's Web-update?

Nichola's SME Tax W-update 21 May 2020

  • COVID-19: Tracker
  • Government ignores Lords’ views on Off-Payroll rules
  • GAAR opinion: Inheritance Tax planning using shares
  • COVID-19: Future Fund convertible loan scheme
  • Coronavirus Self-Employed Income Support Tool
  • COVID-19: Employee Job Retention scheme
  • COVID-19: Scotland
  • COVID-19: Wales
  • COVID-19: Northern Ireland
  • Tax planning for directors (Editor's choice)
  • Starting in business: Start here
  • E share tax scheme fails
  • No relief for In Specie SIPP contributions
  • The costly perils of being a trustee
  • Late payment penalty for partner payment notice


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