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HMRC internal manual

VAT Charities

HM Revenue & Customs
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Medical and scientific equipment (“relevant goods”): Who is an eligible body?

Eligible bodies are referred to in Items 4, 5, and 6. The term “eligible body” is specifically defined in Note (4) to the group. We have not reproduced the full text of the legal note here but some examples of “eligible bodies” are NHS Trusts, not for profit hospitals and charities that provide first-aid services.

Please note that the definition of “eligible body” in Group 15 differs from that of “eligible bodies” for the purposes of Group 6 to Schedule 9 which is concerned with educational establishments.

Please see VCHAR14750 for more guidance on determining whether a supply has been made to an eligible body.

Is a university an eligible body?

A university can normally only qualify as an eligible body if it carries on research (under Note 4(e)). However, once the university qualifies because of its research activity the entire university becomes an eligible body. This means the university can obtain relief on relevant goods purchased for use in medical or veterinary training (also see VCHAR14950 on funding).

Is a GP or GP practice an eligible body?

You may encounter arguments from medical practices or individual GPs that they should be regarded as eligible bodies. These arguments should be rejected as they are not eligible bodies in their own right. Goods donated to a GP or a group of GPs become their property not the property of the National Health Trust or other eligible body.

What charitable institutions qualify as eligible bodies?

This is explained in more detail in VCHAR14400, VCHAR14450, VCHAR14500 andVCHAR14550.