To pre-empt and to stand a chance of winning the case, firms need to demonstrate on a case by case basis, exactly what it is they are providing and that the primary purpose of any treatment is medical. This is made more difficult when patient records are private, confidential and data protection has also to be considered.
As always in tax, the burden of proof is on you the appellant
Do you need third party medical corroboration or an expert witness?
Just because the person performing the treatment is medically qualified, this is not alone sufficient proof that the treatment is for a medical purpose for VAT or tax purposes.
The salient point is not whether the medical treatment being performed is done by a medical person, it is whether the procedure is primarily for a medical purpose ie. WHY it is being carried out?
Excellent robust daily records as evidence to substantiate your claims is needed, not only covering your training and skills but also of your consultation process, diagnosis and reasons for doing each treatment, on an individual case-by-case basis – this is 100% necessary. You will then at least have a good chance of defending any costly HMRC intervention.
The consultation process, as with any other medical consultation, should seek to interview the patient to establish their motivation for seeking treatment and expose any valid psychological needs or the need to alleviate physical symptoms. Diagnose medically and record the reason why such therapeutic services will benefit them and such an approach noted in the records will serve you well. Any treatments denied, amended or alternatives offered should be noted too
This can serve to limit the number of years involved, from VAT being due back to ‘day one’ at the worst, to at best no earlier years being included in a settlement and nothing becoming due – leaving only any relevant changes going forward.
HMRC will always profess and present themselves as “masters of all trades” and in fact may have little experience individually, but you are the expert and with complete, reliable and adequate records and a good adviser as back-up, you will present the best possible face to the authorities.Share