We provide advice, consultancy and support with VAT planning, capital projects and disputes. We have a specialist in-house team with valuable expertise to help you understand complex legislation, case law and HMRC guidance.

We advise on specific projects and also provide VAT audits to review your position.

For start-ups and entrepreneurs: we’ll help you pick the right time to register for VAT, whether or not you’ve reached the registration threshold

For charities: we advise on the specific tax reliefs available to your products, services and capital projects

For building preservation trusts: we provide VAT advce to support feasibility studies for the reuse of historic buildings at risk

For businesses: we’ll advise on the correct VAT treatment of your income supply and update you on the case law which influences your industry

For all: the team will advise on the numerous rates of VAT available, as well as potential reliefs

There are numerous considerations and technicalities with VAT: do you have to register for it, and should you register before you’re legally required to? Will your charity project benefit from zero-rating? Are you supplying one product, or more – and if so, which VAT rates should they attract? On top of this, VAT is an EU tax; how will it evolve should the UK leave the EU?

VAT touches on nearly every aspect of business, so our team works with colleagues across Chiene + Tait to deliver the right advice. We have over 40 years of experience dealing with a wide range of issues for SMEs, charities, farms & estates, and the public sector – such as:

  • VAT registration applications;
  • Land and property transactions;
  • Negotiations with HMRC and Dispute Resolution;
  • Partial exemption and Non Business;
  • VAT Return completion and submission;
  • VAT groups;
  • Comprehensive reviews;
  • Advice on a variety of ad-hoc queries;
  • VAT recovery on capital projects.

Contact us whether you have a specific question, need general advice or are looking for an audit of what you do.

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Value Added Tax is a complex area to understand and if you get it wrong the consequences can be serious. Here are some tips to help you:

  1. Always keep your books and records up to date. Good record keeping is essential to keep on top of your VAT. You must keep your records up to date or it will cause a lot of problems sorting them out later.
  2. Make sure you obtain valid VAT invoices from suppliers. You must have one of these in order to claim back the input VAT, so always check the documents you receive. Correspondingly you should issue a valid sales invoice for all your sales.
  3. Remember to claim VAT bad debt relief. Output VAT on customer invoices which remain unpaid may be reclaimed from HMRC. Unpaid invoices need to be noted as bad in your accounting records and six months must have passed from the payment due date, before a claim on your Return is made.
  4. Don’t claim VAT on entertaining clients. However, any VAT on subsistence costs incurred by staff can be recovered. You must therefore ensure that you correctly identify subsistence and entertainment and keep your receipts.
  5. Claim VAT on mileage claims – where employees are reimbursed for business mileage, input VAT can be claimed. Employees must submit VAT receipts for fuel along with their expense claims.
  6. VAT cannot be reclaimed on non-business expenses.
  7. File all VAT Returns on time and make payments prior to the deadlines. If you are experiencing cash flow difficulties and are struggling to pay on time, contact HMRC immediately to discuss payment terms.
  8. Make sure you deal with errors correctly. This will affect the penalties that you will incur from HMRC.
  9. Submit your VAT Returns electronically.

Need any help, or have any questions? Contact us at vat@chiene.co.uk.

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Expert advice on this complicated and intricate area of tax legislation can save significant sums of money. The complexity means that larger projects involving tribunals and the Courts can take a significant length of time to be resolved; we have worked on some projects over a number of years before the matter is settled.

In one recent case, we saved a small local sports club tens of thousands of pounds during a dispute with HMRC over a new clubhouse – a sum that the club would have been unable to pay and could have ended it.

We saved another client’s asset worth over £100,000 following a review by HMRC.

We provided a fast assessment to a publisher to determine whether their product qualified for zero-rating.

We have worked with a religious institution to identify the implications of a refurbishment and extensions building project: as the institution is a charity, we were able to advise on ways to reduce the tax bill and make the project more affordable.

We support numerous building preservation trusts understand how VAT can impact on a project that directly supports feasibility studies for the reuse of historic buildings at risk. Click our testimonials page here for more information.

Get in touch with your question to see how we can help you.

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Our team

Iain Masterton, our VAT Director, leads the team: he’s worked in VAT for nearly 20 years and has extensive experience of many different industries and clients. He is supported by Kerry Annand, Assistant Manager and ATT qualified, Andrew Young, our Tax Trainee, and Helen Mackenzie, Tax Partner.