The Court of Appeal has decided that VAT repayment claims made under section 80 VATA must refer to quarterly or monthly accounting periods. In Bratt, the taxpayer purported to make a Fleming claim for the whole of 1989 without identifying which of the sums claimed related to particular accounting periods. The Court of Appeal agreed with HMRC that this was not a valid claim since a claim under section 80 was one to recover an amount which was not in fact VAT which had been accounted for to HMRC “for a prescribed accounting period”. Therefore, the claim had to identify the relevant accounting period and the quantum of the claim was the amount of VAT overpaid in that period. This requirement also had the “sound purpose” of allowing HMRC to determine with certainty from the outset whether the whole or any part of the claim was out of time, or whether HMRC needed to go on and investigate it.
Raymond Hill acted for HMRC before the Court of Appeal.
Click here for the full judgment.