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Newey and economic reality

Following the definitive ruling from the ECJ in Halifax plc v CC & E Case C-255/02 [2006] ECR1-1609 the principle of ‘abuse of law’ and the analysis to be applied to tax planning has been the subject of a number of court decisions and was most recently considered by the Upper Tribunal (UT) in HMRC v Paul Newey t/a Ocean Finance [2015] UKUT 300 (TCC). 
 
The UT dismissed HMRC’s appeal against the decision of the First-tier Tribunal that an offshore structure put in place to save otherwise irrecoverable VAT was not abusive in the Halifax sense and on a proper characterisation of the supplies for VAT purposes it was the offshore entity and not the appellant that received supplies of advertising services.
 
In dismissing HMRC’s appeal the UT provided some helpful guidance on...

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