Brexit - VAT and duties

Following the result of the General Election, it is likely that the UK will now leave the EU on 31st January 2020.  It is now looking more likely that we will leave with an agreed “deal” which will allow trading to continue to operate smoothly during the “Transitional Period” which will last until at least December 2020.  As a result, the likely initial impact upon Colleges and departments is less than anticipated in a “no-deal” scenario and in the short term and usual processes around VAT and duty should be followed including issuing zero-rating certificates where appropriate and applying for duty relief where appropriate

UOB EORI Number:   GB 729 8561 87



New Core - VAT Processes

New Core is going live on 3rd June 2019.  The self service system will now require end users to manage a number of VAT processes including VAT certification and selection of Tax Classifications and Recoverability of VAT in Oracle Fusion.  In addition, receipting processes may require end users to attach certain VAT and import documentation as well as delivery notes.

Many other teams will also be required to update existing VAT processes including VAT codes, commodity code information etc.

Help and support is available in the link on this page under “New Core” and will include links to the various VAT Certificates, guidance documents, VAT codes etc.

In addition, you can contact your School or College teams who will support with VAT processes locally.  The University Tax Team are also here to help – please contact them on;  


Most UK businesses have to charge Output VAT (Tax) on all their sales (called supplies), but can usually recover Input VAT (Tax) on their purchases and payments, and then pay (or receive) the difference to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).  In most cases it is a neutral tax until it hits the final consumer or a business that cannot recover input tax.

As most of the University’s supplies are connected with education, which is exempt from VAT, we are unable to recover most of our input tax incurred on making those supplies and it becomes part of the cost of the purchase.

Therefore, all costing should take into account this irrecoverable input tax. Remember that most of our suppliers will be quoting us net of any input tax as they will assume that we can recover it.

The University is allowed to recover DIRECTLY ATTRIBUTABLE input tax on most purchases connected with the making of Vatable (Taxable) supplies, and this is often called “tunnelling”.

In order to account for the correct amount of VAT on its VAT Returns, and to collate all the statistical and turnover information for its other various VAT Returns, the University has to use a number of VAT or Tax codes on all the coding slips. It is vital to use the correct code in order to prevent mistakes, thus incurring penalties from HMRC.

Tax codes connected with sales, income and output tax begin with an S.

Tax codes connected with purchases, payments and input tax begin with a P.

More specific advice on most areas of VAT affecting the University can be found in the navigation at the left of this page.

Help can also be obtained from the VAT Section of the Finance Office, telephone: 46100 email: 


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