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Littlewoods Ltd and others v HMRC

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In Littlewoods Ltd and others v HMRC [2015] EWCA Civ 515 the Court of Appeal found that Littlewoods was entitled to compound interest on VAT wrongly paid.

Littlewoods had paid VAT which was not due. HMRC had repaid the principal amount together with simple interest. Littlewoods claimed that it was also entitled to compound interest. There were four issues:

  1. Were Littlewoods’ restitution claims excluded by VATA 1994 ss 78 and 80 as a matter of English law and without reference to EU Law? The Court of Appeal found that the net effect of the provisions was that the only cause of action available to the taxpayer for the repayment of the principal sums was that afforded by s 80(1) and so restitutionary claims for repayment of VAT were barred by s 80(7). Furthermore s 78(1) excluded common law claims...

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