VAT penalty - summary judgement in favour of the taxpayer

HMRC VAT penalty removed after Tribunal found against HMRC

VAT Penalty: Summary judgement in favour of tax payer.

VAT penalty introduction

Our client received a series of VAT penalties totalling over £240,000 following the late payment of 5 VAT returns.  The first late return, which did not result in a VAT penalty, was in respect of period 08/20 which was during the pandemic.

A VAT specialist from our firm reviewed the VAT penalties and we were instructed to lodge a VAT appeal.  The grounds of appeal to included that the Surcharge Liability Notice was not received by the Appellant and as such the appeal should be allowed.


Before the Tax Tribunal it was submitted that the first issue to consider was whether in the absence of agreement, HMRC could prove that they served one or any of the default surcharge notices.  The Appellant denied receipt of any of them.

No copy notices had been served or filed.  No certificates of service had been filed.  No affidavit or witness statement evidencing service had been filed.

HMRC like everybody else was affected by the pandemic. This would affect post rooms.  It was simply not good enough for a representative of HMRC to say that documents were served when that representative had no evidence or knowledge of this.


Summary judgement was given in favour of our client.


Contact one of our VAT specialists today to schedule a consultation regarding your business and discover how we can assist you in effectively dealing with any HMRC VAT penalty.