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Reclaim VAT on UK photo books?

714 Views 5 Replies Latest reply: Sep 16, 2012 12:32 AM by Dan Thurgood RSS
Shuttleworth125 Level 2 Level 2 (415 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Jun 24, 2012 5:16 AM

Following a judgement last year most photobooks are exempt from UK VAT. It seems that we should be able to claim back VAT paid on books purchased going back at least to 2008.

 

At the moment Apple are still charging UK VAT on photobooks, and there has been no mention of refunding VAT paid. Loxley have removed VAT fro  their photobooks and are organising refund of tax paid.

 

Has anyone looked into this? What is the best way to contact Apple to tell them they are incorrectly charging VAT on VAT free items?

 

 

Links:

 

http://loxleycolour.com/zerovat.aspx

 

http://www.photoguild.co.uk/5624/vat-free-albums

 

http://www.printweek.com/Business/article/1107786/truprint-photobook-vat-ruling- inside-view/

  • Dan Thurgood Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 12, 2012 2:36 AM (in response to Shuttleworth125)

    I've just gone after them on this and got a VAT refund on books ordered throough Aperture although I didn't know how far back it could go. I went for November 2011 as that was the approximate date of the ruling against HMRC. Truprint got over hlf a million back by claiming right back to 2006 - not sure if Apple would support that long a claim, but then I didn't try. I basically called and emailed until I got a response. You should go for it too. I just used the standard 0800 support number. Hope that helps, and maybe if more of us go for it, Apple will change their policy.

  • Tgara Level 4 Level 4 (3,540 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 14, 2012 1:19 PM (in response to Dan Thurgood)

    Just curious, how much money are we talking about here?

  • Dan Thurgood Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 15, 2012 1:57 PM (in response to Tgara)

    Well, UK VAT is 20% so whatever I've been charged since November 2011 - 20% of that, which I think amounts to about £45 or so. I've not seen an official remittance yet, but they've told me they're refunding it direct to my credit card. I also had an email from Apple Online Store saying that "...removing the VAT  is currently in progress, however, this will take some time to complete." So it sounds like they're doing it, but why it should take some time is a mystery to me. All countries have different sales tax rates, it's just that in the UK photobooks are now zero-rated. So surely this is a databse issue - if the customer is in the UK, set the VAT to zero. Hardly rocket science is it?

     

    They also told me "Apple are refunding VAT charged on Photo books purchased through Aperture and iPhoto at the customers request. " So go for it. If you're in the UK that is!

  • Tgara Level 4 Level 4 (3,540 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 15, 2012 5:48 PM (in response to Dan Thurgood)

    Dan Thurgood wrote:

     

    Well, UK VAT is 20% so whatever I've been charged since November 2011 - 20% of that, which I think amounts to about £45 or so. I've not seen an official remittance yet, but they've told me they're refunding it direct to my credit card. I also had an email from Apple Online Store saying that "...removing the VAT  is currently in progress, however, this will take some time to complete." So it sounds like they're doing it, but why it should take some time is a mystery to me. All countries have different sales tax rates, it's just that in the UK photobooks are now zero-rated. So surely this is a databse issue - if the customer is in the UK, set the VAT to zero. Hardly rocket science is it?

     

    They also told me "Apple are refunding VAT charged on Photo books purchased through Aperture and iPhoto at the customers request. " So go for it. If you're in the UK that is!

     

    Man, that's messed up... What's that 20% supposed to go to?  National Health Care? 

  • Dan Thurgood Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 16, 2012 12:32 AM (in response to Tgara)

    We've always had VAT in the UK, althogh not everything has it. Books are zero, certain printed items are zero, kid's clothes are zero... Gas and electricity have their own special rate (5% I think?) and everything else is 20%. 20 years ago it was 15%, then it crept up to 17.5% and then 20%. If you're a business, you can register with HMRC as a VATable company, then everything you invoice had VAT on it, but every bit of VAT you pay via the company you can claim back. So ulimately VAT gets payed by the conusmer.

     

    'National Health Care' is paid for by National Insurance (and everything else). Then there's Income Tax, Capital Gains Tax, Corporation Tax, Inheritance Tax, Road Fund License... yes, our government gets a lot from us. But whatever you're ill with, you can walk into any hospital in the country and the best trained doctors and nurses in the world will work tirelessly until you're better or dead. I wouldn't change that for any other system in the world. In Liverpool where I live, we have the best Children's Hospital and the best Women's Hospital in the country. My family has experienced the proffesionalism and care from both of these institutions and the quantity of both we got was in no way comensurate (?) with what we'd paid in National Insurance. The NHS rocks.

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