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Value-added tax

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(Redirected from Value Added Tax)

Value-added tax (often called by its initial letters "VAT" or “V.A.T.”) is the English name of a tax that is called goods and services tax in some places. It is like a sales tax that is charged in some US States. In the UK it is charged at 20%.

The tax is paid every time goods are sold.

  • The maker charges the wholesaler VAT and pays the tax to the government
  • The wholesaler charges the shop VAT and pays the government the tax minus the tax it has already paid to the maker
  • The shop charges the customer VAT and pays the government the tax minus the tax it has already paid to the wholesaler.

The tax can be complicated to work out, because every business or person has to charge the tax, and have an invoice to show they have paid it. The only person who pays the full amount of tax is the customer.

The government also charges VAT on some services. This is because some companies do not make a thing which can be used (goods) instead they do something to help a customer (that is, provide a service).

For example, a garage-owner might sell a spare part for a customer’s car. The garage-owner charges VAT because spare parts are “goods”. If the garage-owner helps the customer by fitting the spare parts into the car, the garage-owner would charge extra for his time, and would also charge VAT on the amount he charged for the service of fitting the parts.

VAT is not added to all products.In the United Kingdom children's books and clothes do not have VAT. Staple foods are not taxed - but luxury foods are. A famous legal case about Jaffa Cakes in 1991.was about the difference. There was a later case about flapjacks.[1] Hot takeaway food is taxed but cold takeaway food isnt.[2]

References[change | change source]

  1. "When's a flapjack not a flapjack? It's a maddeningly difficult question". www.ft.com. Retrieved 2024-03-30.
  2. "Why the UK's biscuit tax leaves a bad taste in the mouth". www.ft.com. Retrieved 2024-03-30.