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Muster Inns v HMRC

In Muster Inns v HMRC (TC03689 – 6 June 2014) the FTT held that a business making supplies of construction services in the UK over a defined period did not ‘belong’ in the UK.

Muster Inns which owns a restaurant based in Devon hired the services of a Guernsey based company Amberley for the refurbishment of its premises. Amberley charged VAT. As the restaurant made very few supplies during the relevant period this resulted in a repayment of VAT by HMRC.

HMRC subsequently decided to cancel Amberley’s VAT registration with retrospective effect to the date of issue of its certificate. This was on the basis that Amberley did not ‘belong in the UK’ and that therefore a ‘reverse charge’ applied (VATA 1994 s 8). HMRC assessed Muster Inns to VAT.

Referring to Berkholz C-168/84 the FTT pointed out that a person could have...

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