Occasionally a court judgment forces practitioners to rethink an area of VAT which had generally been thought to be settled law.

Advising clients on certain VAT matters is difficult because some provisions can easily be interpreted in more than one way. The adviser needs to read between the lines in the legislation and try to decide how HMRC will probably treat a transaction, how they should treat it and, if necessary, whether fighting their decision is worthwhile.

The courts and tribunals use the following principles when considering the appeals.

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