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HMRC internal manual

VAT Clothing

HM Revenue & Customs
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The design test-is the article designed for young children?: Style Considerations

In a minority of cases, you may need to consider whether there are factors inherent in the garment which make it suitable for older persons. If this applies, a garment which is within the maximum measurements could nevertheless be standard-rated.

In the Tribunal of Walter Stewart Ltd (MAN/73/29), a leather coat which did not exceed the maximum measurements was nevertheless ruled to be suitable for older persons. This was firstly because it was a relatively high-cost fashion garment, and would thus be more likely to appeal to adults, and secondly because a three-inch bust dart had been inserted.

It is unlikely the reverse will apply, as the ‘cut-off’ age for zero-rating is only 14 - and it will be rare for an article of clothing exceeding the maximum size limits allowed in Notice714 to be too impossibly juvenile in style for a 14-year old to wear. However, you may wish to consider the tribunal ruling in Benrose Ltd t/a Multi-Stock Company (LON/98/7048) as outlined in VCLOTHING4500.