VATupdate Newsletter Week 17 2021

Better late than never: here’s this week’s newsletter.

What’s special this week? Some highlights.
  • VAT fraud is a global issue. There are cases all over the world. But some cases are more obvious than others. In Australia, a 65-year-old man faces a possible 22 years in jail for not reporting GST and Income Tax on royalty income he received. We especially liked the strong remarks of the Financial Police Force: “Financial criminals who think they can cheat the system and get away with it can think again — no one is beyond the reaches of the SFCT.”
  • When it comes to VAT case-law, the UK is probably one of the countries where the strangest questions are raised. Whether this is due to the common law system, the wit of advisors trying to find the mazes in de VAT law, or low costs for starting procedures, or something else, we don’t know. The First Tier Tribunal had another interesting case on its hands: can a car wash be regarded a car park? We don’t know how long you would normally take to wash your car, but in this case, the car wash was located on a piece of land that was (also) used as a car park. Check-out the case if you want to find outie Tribunal found that the rental of the piece of land was x or standard rated for VAT.
  • Last week we had an ECJ case dealing with the question where roaming services are subject to VAT. Telecom is an interesting market, and this week we had an item on US (Sales) Tax on wireless services included in the price of a mobile phone. The Maine Supreme Judicial Court held that the taxable “sale price” of smartphones sold at significantly discounted prices to customers who entered into wireless service contracts at the taxpayer’s retail stores included payments made by the wireless service carriers in connection with the sales. Bummer for Apple, who had not collected and remitted sales tax on the wireless services component in the sales price of their iPhones.
  • We had an interesting article on the GST treatment of sports in India. According to the analysis in the article, “the structure of indirect tax on sports in India is such that it favours official / non-profit bodies, while it taxes the entrepreneur heavily.”  Interesting read for this weekend. While you may o consider the fact that horse-riding at the beach and outdoor running classes can be reduced rated in the Netherlands, while mountain biking in the dunes and giving tennis lessons are standard rated.