Independent VAT Consultant
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VAT: When is a charity not a charity?

Court of Appeal agrees with HMRC that a community amateur sports club is not a charity, so VAT was payable on builder services for the new cricket pavilion.

9th Apr 2021
Independent VAT Consultant
Columnist
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Female cricketer
istock_Kolbz
CASC status

Many years ago, I was involved with a football club and one of my tasks as treasurer was to get us Community Amateur Sports Club (CASC) status. The biggest carrot was an 80% discount on business rates – an annual saving of £1,500 – not bad for an hour’s work. 

But it would not, in my view, have been correct for us to be treated as having charitable status and getting VAT concessions available to a charity. These concessions include; zero-rated advertising and zero-rated construction services on a new clubhouse or pavilion. The football club was definitely a non-profit making body but not a charity because it also had social activities. 

Cricket club case

The committee and advisers of Eynsham Cricket Club [2021] EWCA Civ 225 have shown great energy and resilience in seeking to persuade HMRC and tribunal judges that the club qualified for zero-rated building services on its new clubhouse. The latest argument in the Court of Appeal was that it qualified as a charity for VAT purposes and therefore zero-rating because of its status as a CASC. It was not registered with the Charity Commission. 

But the latest verdict went in favour of HMRC.

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By Paul Crowley
09th Apr 2021 18:25

If only they made a 5 minute call to HMRC and pretended that HMRC seemed not to object

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