Parking enforcement on private land is subject to VAT
The First Tier Tribunal has dismissed an appeal by Vehicle Control Services Ltd, a company that manages and provides parking enforcement services in private car parks. The company argued that its charges imposed on motorists who contravened the parking regulations were outside the scope of VAT as being akin to damages for trespass or even, perhaps, as "fines" like those imposed in relation to on street and similar parking contraventions. The Tribunal disagreed, finding that the signage provided in the car parks made it clear that motorists parking there in contravention of the rules applicable were entering into a contractual arrangement for which the charges were (VATable) consideration. Moreover, as a matter of land law, the company had insufficient interest in the car park itself to claim damages for trespass, having being granted only the right to enter the car park to carry out its enforcement function. Accordingly, (and as indicated by the signage referred to in the Tribunal decision) the company's charges included VAT. For further information and to discuss the implications of the case, please contact Daniel Smith on 0207 007 0770.
EU Implementing Regulation adopted by the EU Council of Ministers
As expected, the European Council of Ministers formally adopted the EU's "Implementing Regulation" at the ECOFIN meeting on 15 March. The Regulation sets out rules for the implementation of the EU's Principal VAT Directive and Intra-Community VAT refund scheme, with the objective of ensuring better compliance with the objectives of the EU internal market. Whilst the Regulation comes into force (mostly) on 1 July 2011, since it clarifies the meaning of the existing EU VAT law, its provisions will be very influential before that date. Bingo duty not chargeable on admission charges – as long as they are clearly disclosed In its decision in the case of Cosmo Leisure Limited, the Tribunal has confirmed that, in principle, charges for admission to Bingo sessions are not subject to Bingo Duty. However, the Tribunal also confirmed that such charges have to be separately disclosed, rather than being merely included in the price charged for a bingo book. For further information, and to discuss the implications of the decision, please contact Barney Horn on 0121 695 5902.