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HMRC internal manual

VAT Government and Public Bodies

Government departments and health authorities: Contracted Out Services (COS) Headings: COS Heading 65 - Training, tuition or education

There is no general restriction under this Heading. This includes on-line training and training provided for example by lecturers, external organisations etc.

You should note that education and vocational training is exempt from VAT (so there is no VAT to recover) if it is provided by one of the ‘eligible bodies’ listed in Notice 701/30: “Education & Vocational Training”. In practice these are:

  1. Schools for the under-19s
  2. Universities
  3. Further and Higher Education colleges
  4. Other public bodies
  5. Non-profit making bodies that reinvest surpluses of income back into the courses they provide


  • VAT incurred on costs which relate to non-business training activities


  • VAT incurred on separate supplies of accommodation, meals and room hire