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HMRC internal manual

VAT Clothing

From
HM Revenue & Customs
Updated
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The suitability test: What is the suitability test?

This is the final step in deciding whether the product can be awarded a zero rate VAT liability and requires that the articles must not be suitable for older persons. By this we mean that the garment is intended by its supplier for wear by young children, rather than in the narrower sense of it being just childish in style. It is possible for a retailer to alter garments’ suitability for older persons (see VCLOTHING5300). Thus the suitability test may apply to both manufacturers and retailers.

The suitability test includes the concept of ‘holding out for sale’, explained in Notice714. The concept of holding out for sale does not have the force of law, but is a further Departmental interpretation of how the concept of ‘designed for young children’ may be judged.