Our team of specialist VAT lawyers have experience across the full range of indirect tax services, including VAT, customs duties, stamp taxes and the annual tax on enveloped dwellings (ATED). With careful planning, we are able to avoid potential pitfalls and reduce the indirect tax risks for a variety of businesses and transactions.

Our work includes advising on the recovery of input tax, indirect tax issues affecting financing structures, VAT affecting property. We advise on a broad range of stamp tax issues (including SDLT planning and compliance, complex development arrangements, extraction of properties from SPV's and exchange of properties and in particular, issues surrounding the valuation of AHA protected tenancies).

Areas of focus

Our expertise in VAT, duties, stamp taxes and ATED includes the following:

  • VAT advice regarding registration, deregistration and compliance.
  • Advice to clients regarding the VAT penalty regimes and assistance with litigating default surcharges and personal liability notices.
  • VAT advice generally, and in particular in the field of financial services and property.
  • VAT TOGC analysis, advice and drafting.
  • SDLT opinions across a broad range of commercial and residential property arrangements.
  • Application of multiple dwellings relief to SDLT, in particular with regard to student accommodation.
  • Application of the wait and see and contingency principles to stamp duties arising from the acquisition of shares.
  • Stamp duty reserve tax advice.
  • Advice to individuals who are considering restructuring residential property structures.
  • ATED advice both generally and as regards occupation by non qualifying individuals.
  • Advice to companies regarding obtaining the benefits of reliefs against the 15 per cent rate of SDLT and the possibilities of claw back.

Advice to Sceptre Services Limited and Blada Limited in connection with MTIC cases against HMRC, including conducting advocacy before the First Tier Tribunal.

Advising the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on the VAT implications of restructuring its facility management services arrangements, worth £13 million per annum for the UK and Northern Europe.

Providing VAT advice to Intermedia UK Limited and its parent company Intermedia.net Inc on the provision of electronically supplied services from the UK and US worldwide in the wake of the new place of supply of services rules effective from 1 January 2010.

VAT advice regarding the application of the reverse charge to "advertising" services supplied to a UK financial services company by an associated overseas entity, and advice to a South African company about the VAT treatment of goods exported from the UK and the conditions for zero rating.

Advising on VAT issues for shooting clubs, including structuring the clubs to fall with the VAT exemption for non-profit making sporting clubs.

Advising a significant insurer on the correct rate of insurance premium tax to be charged in respect of car protection plan policies.

Advising a major importer of cosmetic products on a challenge to changes made to the customs tariff classification of its products, including a reference to the European Court of Justice.

Giving detailed VAT advice to participators in land pooling arrangements and their deals with promoters and developers.

Giving VAT advice to landowners and developers in relation to joint venture type arrangements designed to exploit development land.

Providing advice to shareholders regarding a strategy to align payment of SDRT with payment of SDLT in a rest in contract CGT scheme.

Advising a number of clients on the SDLT implications of the recent changes to the exchange provisions.

Advice on the capital goods scheme in respect of the acquisition (by way of transfer of going concern) of a mainly commercial property containing a residential element.

Providing stamp duty land tax (SDLT) and VAT advice in relation to the development of a large shopping centre including the surrender and regrant of an existing lease and the carrying out of various development works.

Advising the Welsh Government on the development of their Land Transaction Tax.

Assisting the UK Government to develop and implement the ATED.

Meet the team
Headshot John Barnett

John Barnett Partner

  • Head of Partnerships
  • Private Client Services
  • Tax
Ian Carnochan

Ian Carnochan Partner

  • Tax
  • Corporate Tax
  • Real Estate Tax

Hilary Barclay Partner

  • Tax
  • Mergers and Acquisitions Tax
  • Tax Advice for Companies and Shareholders 

What others say...

Very diverse team of specialists and individuals. For every topic, there is someone with plenty of experience.

Legal 500 2024

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