Pete Chown

Name: Pete Chown
Social Capital: 8SC
About Me: I started two businesses, in engineering and advertising. I helped write the Fraud Act 2006, helped design SSL, and was part of a group who started a charity.
Read more by clicking here
commented on The TPA VAT Quiz 2015-03-27 15:59:29 +0000 · Flag
The place of supply rules are a nightmare too. If you’re trading internationally, try to work out where the ‘supply’ takes place for VAT purposes.

This went from complicated to silly with the changes that came in this January. If you supply services electronically then the place of supply depends on whether the customer is a consumer. If it is, the place of supply is the consumer’s country, and there is no VAT registration threshold. As a result, you have to register for VAT in every EU member state. Fortunately you can do all the registrations in one go through HMRC, but there is still the possibility that you could be audited by any of the VAT offices.

Perhaps you decide that it’s only worth doing business with some EU countries, because the amount of business doesn’t justify going through the bureaucracy for all 28. Presumably, though, that’s a breach of EU law because you’re discriminating based on the consumer’s member state.
commented on When is a tax not a tax? When it's a levy? 2015-02-06 14:24:48 +0000 · Flag
How much power do councils have over tax anyway? I was surprised by the workplace parking levy because it didn’t sound like the sort of thing a council would have the power to introduce. Obviously they can charge for parking in their own car parks, the same as any property owner can, but is there some kind of statutory scheme allowing for workplace parking levies? Similarly with the hotel bed charge, and all the other things.

Presumably these councils have done enough legal homework to know that their schemes are actually enforceable, but I’m curious to know how it works.