UK VAT refunds for non-EU businesses require action by 31 December 2015

Executive Summary 

Many multinational enterprises (MNEs) incur VAT in countries where they are not established or VAT registered. A business may, for example, incur foreign VAT on trade fairs and conferences, meals and accommodations, travel, transportation and fuel costs, business entertainment, marketing and advertising costs, professional services, telecommunications; printing materials and stationery, and training. 

Non-EU businesses that have incurred value added tax (VAT) in the UK during the 12 month period July 2014-June 2015 may be able to recover the VAT by applying for a refund - provided they comply with the rules. Claims by non-EU businesses must be submitted within six months following the end of the claim period. The closing date for applications for the above 12 month period is 31st December 2015, so taxpayers should be collecting the required information now to support a successful claim. The deadline is a fixed date, and late claims are not accepted. The fact claims are made by post and the deadline follows shortly after the Christmas holiday period needs to be borne in mind.