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HMRC undertake a continuing programme of VAT inspections at NHS trusts. The scope, duration and frequency of inspections will vary, depending largely on the size and complexity of the trust. An officer may be on his/her own or be accompanied by another officer. HMRC will give advanced notice and propose a date for the inspection, […]


Procure 21+ is a method of procuring major capital schemes for the NHS in England. There is a similar scheme in Scotland called Frameworks Scotland. In simple terms, these procurement routes allow COS recovery on a design and build costs which would otherwise be irrecoverable under normal COS rules. HMRC require that an initial review […]


Can VAT be recovered where a trust uses IT staff supplied by an employment agency to supplement its in-house IT team? This is another area where there has been some doubt concerning entitlement to COS recovery under Heading 14 ‘Computer services supplied to the specification of the recipient’. In the light of HMRC’s recent updated […]


HMRC has confirmed that there is no scope for VAT recovery on costs related to the provision of free secure parking used by NHS staff and for patient’s vehicles. We are aware that other advisors have suggested such costs are eligible for recovery under heading 63 ‘Storage, distribution and goods disposal services’. HMRC has confirmed […]


We receive regular queries concerning VAT recovery on grounds maintenance services.  It is not immediately clear which contracted-out services heading is appropriate for costs such as grass cutting, tree surgery and general gardening. The correct heading for these costs is 35, “Maintenance, non-structural repair and cleaning of buildings”. Historically, there was a separate heading for […]