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HMRC internal manual

VAT Registration

Entity to be registered: clubs and associations: clubs registered under the Industrial and Provident Societies Acts

The main aim of these Acts is to provide a means of incorporating societies which carry on a trade, an industry or a business and only clubs which carry on such activities can be incorporated under them. A club incorporated under either of these Acts is a corporate body.

The business must be that of a genuine co-operative society, or one carried on for the benefit of the community. The club must consist of at least seven members, none of whom (other than a registered society) may have an interest exceeding a certain set sum.

If you are not satisfied that the club is what the applicant says it is, you should call for copies of the constitution, rules, articles and memoranda of association and the certificate of registration under the Industrial and Provident Societies Acts. The terms and details of these documents will spell out the way the club is organised and who is entitled to do what and to what property. This should allow you to make an informed decision about what sort of club it is.

These clubs do not fall within the terms of section 46(3) of the VAT Act 1994 and registration should be in the name of the club under status ‘1’ (incorporated company).