VAT News

The Great Repeal Bill (‘the Bill’) – Reliance on EU VAT rulings

16.05.2017

One issue of concern for any sector is what certainty the UK taxpayer could place on EU Court rulings on VAT. The Bill intends that the UK Courts will no longer have to give primacy to EU -derived law over domestic law. Therefore, the UK Court will not be obliged to follow CJEU judgements given after Brexit nor will they refer questions of EU law – which includes the EU Principal VAT Directive – to the EU court.

However, the White Paper indicates that the EU-derived law will have primacy over other domestic law enacted before the UK leaves the EU. UK legislation enacted after Brexit will have primacy over EU law therefore. It is recognised that there is a need for certainty especially for businesses clearly in dealing with VAT matters so it was important to note that the Bill sets out that judgements from the CJEU pre-Brexit will have the status of UK Supreme Court judgements and would be binding precedents unless, exceptionally, the UK Supreme Court decides otherwise.

Where we are still in doubt is in the application of CJEU Judgements given after Brexit.