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HMRC internal manual

VAT Personal Exports: Retail Exports

Personal exports - retail exports: Assurance at the retailer: Visiting the VAT retail export scheme retailer

You will be visiting retailers:

  • who use the scheme as part of their normal trading operations; or
  • who only use the scheme occasionally as part of their normal trading operations. For example, where an overseas person visiting the UK with a motor vehicle, boat or light aircraft requires repairs to be made to the vehicle etc during the visit. (The supply of parts and equipment fitted in the course of the repairs, but not the service element, can be zero-rated under the retail export scheme, if the repair is for private purposes.)

Traders who fail to operate the scheme correctly

The NASand VAT assurance officers may become aware of retailers who fail to operate the scheme correctly from:

  • rejected forms returned by customs officers; or
  • letters of complaint from travellers who have not received a refund.

The assurance visit

You should:

  • follow up uncertified VAT refund documents returned by customs officers;
  • check the retailer’s procedures; and
  • undertake checks on the certified VAT refund documents held by the retailer as evidence of export.