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HMRC internal manual

VAT Cost Sharing Exemption Manual

How the conditions are to be interpreted: Some particular forms of Cost Sharing Groups: Can Unincorporated Associations be CSGs?

Where an organisation falls within s 46(2) of the VAT Act 1994 (which includes unincorporated associations) and is managed by its members in accordance with Regulation 8 of the VAT Regulations 1995 it will be eligible to be a CSG. Regulation 8 provides that:

“Anything required to be done by or under the Act, these regulations or otherwise by or on behalf of a club, association or organisation, the affairs of which are managed by its members or a committee or committees of members, shall be the joint and several responsibility of -

  1. Every member holding office as president, chairman, treasurer, secretary, or any similar office; or in default thereof,
  2. Every member holding office as a member of a committee; or in default thereof,
  3. Every member, provided that it is done by any official, committee member or member referred to above, that shall be sufficient compliance with any such requirement”.

If this type of association makes taxable supplies and is required to register for VAT or wishes to voluntarily register for VAT it will be registered in the name of the association.

Proprietary associations are generally not owned by their ‘members’ on the same basis as members associations so would not qualify as CSGs unless ownership was shared amongst all members and the proprietor and all members received qualifying services from the association.