VAT in Insurance

Speaker:  Robert Facer  |  CPD Hours: 6.0

Price £575 plus VAT

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VAT is a complex tax as it is, but the insurance industry also has its own specialised procedures, ‘language’, some unique VAT rules and specific partial exemption methods. The UK legislation derives from the EU legislation, but is sometimes at odds with it. This sector is also particularly sensitive to changes that follow from new case law.

This course covers those aspects of VAT specific to the insurance industry, with an emphasis on avoiding pitfalls and mitigation techniques with reference to decided cases.

The impact of Brexit is, of course, yet to be felt, and how the industry will unwind itself from EU legislation will be known over time. What is clear is that this course will always be kept live and any changes incorporated at the time of running.


How VAT affects insurance transactions

  • A review of the key issues
  • Basic compliance issues
  • Basic VAT planning

The exemption for insurance transactions

  • UK insurance premiums and commissions
  • P&I Clubs and their managers
  • The system for Lloyd’s Underwriters and Managing Agents
  • Insurance supplied with other goods or services
  • Transactions which are not exempt
  • Intermediaries
  • Insurance supplied through online platforms
  • The problems of outsourcing
  • Investment and other income

International services

  • Exempt premiums
  • “Outside the scope” premiums
  • The effects on VAT recovery
  • Intermediaries and the ‘look through’
  • The “reverse charge” – pitfalls and planning
  • Branch and subsidiary issues
  • Anti-avoidance provisions

Partial exemption

  • The basic principles
  • Direct attribution
  • The standard method
  • Special methods for insurers and intermediaries
  • Items that must be excluded following recent case law or because of distortions
  • Adjustments to VAT recovery, including the capital goods scheme

Dealings with HMRC

  • Specific compliance issues for insurance
  • Planning points
  • Risk areas and golden rules
  • The penalty regime and how to avoid it


This course is suitable for those who have VAT experience, but who are new to the sector. This course will give a sound grounding in both compliance and planning matters.

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