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HMRC internal manual

VAT Fraud

Basic interventions: input tax interventions: supporting a claim to input tax: reviewing other evidence to support a claim to input tax where the VAT invoice is valid

In seeking to ensure that the claim to input tax is valid you should consider other evidence, such as purchase orders, bank statements, cash books etc. This is so that you can be satisfied that the supply:

  • has taken place,
  • is as described on the VAT invoice,
  • was to the person who holds the VAT invoice,
  • has been paid for, and
  • was for the furtherance of the business.

Where the taxable person only holds a valid VAT invoice but does not hold, and/or can not obtain any other evidence then you should use the information you have gathered about the business (VATF32000) and determine whether it is credible (VATF33000), testing the credibility if appropriate. Where, taking account of all the evidence, you are not satisfied that the alleged taxable supplies were received by the business then you should deny the input tax. However, when doing so you should ensure that you fully document your reasons for coming to this decision.

Evidence for deducting input tax is dealt with in VIT30500, VIT31000 and VIT31200 of the Input Tax guidance manual and should be read before deciding whether to refuse input tax because of insufficient evidence.

Further guidance can be sought from the VAT Fraud Team.