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Finanzamt Trier v Cardpoint GmbH

In Finanzamt Trier v Cardpoint GmbH (Case C-42/18) (3 October 2019) the CJEU found that services which consisted in data transmission to banks and the operation of ATMs were not exempt financial transactions.

Cardpoint operated ATMs in Germany for various banks. It stocked the ATMs with cash checked customers’ identification communicated with their banks to obtain authorisations for cash withdrawals and sent a daily data file to the German central bank. The issue was whether the services provided by Cardpoint were exempt under the Principal VAT Directive Art 135(1)(d) as financial transactions or whether they were akin to the services provided by Bookit (Case C-607/14) and limited to technical and administrative assistance.

The court noted that in order to qualify for the exemption a transaction should have the effect of transferring funds and trigger a change in the legal and financial relationship of the parties. The...

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