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HMRC internal manual

VAT Groups

Applications for VAT group treatment: groups - duplication

VAT Act 1994, section 43D provides that:

  • a body corporate may not be a member of more than one group at any time;
  • any application to include an already grouped member in another group should be refused;
  • where applications to join more than one group are received at the same time all the applications shall be refused.

It is only the body that would create the duplication that is to be refused entry to a group on these grounds; the grouping of any other applicants can continue.

Where it is found that duplication has already occurred, this legislation gives us the power to remove an offending company from the relevant groups.

Note: Duplication does not occur where the eligibility conditions cease to be satisfied for one group but there has been a failure/oversight in removing the member from a group before entry into another group. The remedy is to remove the member from the old group from the date at which it ceased to be eligible (VGROUPS02650).