Sportech to get £80m Spot the Ball tax refund

British gambling company Sportech is set to get more than £80m from HMRC after a tribunal found that the company had paid more VAT than it should have on its ‘Spot the Ball’ game between 1979 and 1996.

The first-tier tribunal decided that the company, which operates the Football Pools and Tote Racing, was entitled to a VAT refund because its Spot the Ball competition was a game of chance rather than skill and therefore not subject to VAT, a Sportech spokeswoman told AccountingWEB.

Details of the tribunal’s ruling have not yet been published.

Sportech said that it will talk with HMRC about the size of the payment. The company added that it expects the sum to be repaid would be more than £40m of overpaid VAT plus simple interest, which would more than double the total sum to more than £80m.

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