A little movement from HMRC to potentially help some businesses. So now we press for more.

Here’s the latest from EU VAT Action . The key development is this –

Basically HMRC has agreed that, for those in the UK below the VAT threshold, you can use the PayPal (or equivalent) country code as your evidence for proof of place of supply until the end of June.This is an enormous achievement, due to the thousands of people who have taken action in this campaign, so thank you!

It’s not perfect. It doesn’t fix the rest of the problems. To be honest (see below) HMRC themselves can’t fix most of those. But it WILL allow more people to keep trading, while we all negotiate a reworking of the rules and a sensible threshold.

Here’s the text:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/vat-supplying-digital-services-to-private-consumers/vat-businesses-supplying-digital-services-to-private-consumers

So this is a move by HMRC which will potentially help some of those digital businesses which might otherwise have to close on 31st December. Because HMRC have finally recognised how massively wrong the assumptions underpinning this legislation have been, and what a horrendous mess they now face. That much is progress.

That said, this tweak is by no means a solution. If it’s meaningless in your particular context, write and say so. Make it quite clear that tinkering around the edges isn’t going to make this headache go away.

EU VAT Action will absolutely continue campaigning until a workable system is devised with thresholds that recognise the levels of turnover below which the administrative burdens of compliance are impossible for a small trader and where the costs for the tax authorities outstrip any potential revenues.

So , please keep on sending your letters and emails to convince the powers that be, in Whitehall and Brussels, that review and revision of this legislation is essential, from the ground up. Every time you see a news story about the UK or EU economy, use that as a prompt for a fresh round of protests!

This past week, we’ve seen newspaper and BBC stories about worse than expected UK deficit figures. So why not contact George Osborne and point out that putting tens of thousands of small traders out of work really isn’t going to help with this, never mind all those rest of the world sellers whose response to VATMOSS is simply to cut off all digital commerce with the UK and EU.

Any UK citizen can do that in his capacity as Chancellor by e-mailing public.enquiries@hm-treasury.gov.uk, telephoning 020 7270 5000 or writing to The Correspondence & Enquiry Unit, HM Treasury, 1 Horse Guards Road, London, SW1A 2HQ.

According to Environment Secretary Liz Truss, the countryside is to drive UK startups with superfast internet through 2015. I really do think she deserves a flurry of letters pointing out precisely how VATMOSS dooms that hope to failure.

To lobby her as Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, please contact Defra directly. Write to: Defra, Nobel House, 17 Smith Square, London, SW1P 3JR Email: defra.helpline@defra.gsi.gov.uk Telephone: 0345 9 33 55 77

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