VAT Assessments, Disputes & Appeals

VAT assessments can be a source of great concern when received by a business. If you have received a VAT assessment we suggest seeking timely advice from a VAT Appeal assessment consultant. Our VAT specialists will consider every aspect of any VAT assessment including, but not limited to, whether or not it has been correctly made, made in time, and if a VAT assessment is even appropriate in the first place, The amount of any assessment will also be considered in relation to each VAT period assessed.

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VAT Assessments – Work With A VAT Appeal Assessment Consultant

It may come as a nasty surprise to discover that a business is unable to rely on a written ruling from HMRC and that the First Tier Tax Tribunal is not permitted to hear an appeal solely based on the contention that HMRC gave incorrect advice. Since the cost of the alternative means of legal action can be prohibitive, HMRC knows that it is almost impossible for taxpayers to hold it to account.

A number of VAT disputes and VAT assessments can be resolved by presenting the facts clearly to HMRC supported by VAT technical knowledge. This can result in VAT assessments being withdrawn or a significant reduction in the VAT assessment.

A VAT dispute might arise when HMRC seek to charge a business a VAT penalty. In our experience even after significant dialogue between the parties when the issues have been presented to HMRC from a slightly different perspective it is possible to achieve the withdrawal of a VAT penalty. It may also be possible to have the amount of the VAT penalty reduced or to have the VAT penalty suspended.

Alternative dispute resolution (ADR)

This process is available in certain cases of dispute such as VAT assessments and can be helpful to solve VAT or other Indirect Tax matters or clarify the issues that require a ruling at a Tax Tribunal. You are able to decide whether to utilise a mediator provided free of charge by HMRC, or a third party at a charge, to assist in exploring how a dispute can be resolved.

The VAT ADR process offers an opportunity to settle certain disputes more quickly and with less expense for both sides. HMRC say that matters are resolved or progress is achieved at ADR in the majority of matters considered and that has also been our experience.

If at any time during the ADR process you are unhappy with the progress or the conclusion of the ADR is not satisfactory you are still able to take your case to the Tax Tribunal. Solve VAT has considerable experience in working with client’s at ADR meetings.

VAT Appeal to the VAT Tribunal

If resolution cannot be reached in any other way it may be necessary to lodge a VAT appeal to the VAT Tribunal. The process of a VAT appeal involves steps that may be daunting to a business not experienced in this area. We can assist by advising or acting as an agent in the process.

Our VAT Appeal assessment consultants have experience of representing clients at the VAT Tribunal although we would sometimes recommend that Counsel is instructed to lead the case. We have close relationships with a number of barristers who specialise in appearing at the VAT Tribunal.

If you would like to discuss further how we can help you resolve a dispute with HMRC please contact us or call our head office on 0161 883 2120 and ask for Peter.