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HMRC internal manual

VAT Sport Manual

VAT treatment of sports facilities provided by local Councils following London Borough of Ealing: Effects of CJEU judgment in London Borough of Ealing

Local authorities and other public bodies may wish to apply exemption to the provision of sports facilities under EU law. In order to exercise the right to exemption, the public body concerned must notify HMRC that it is asserting its right to exemption under the principle of direct effect following the judgment in London Borough of Ealing case (Case C-633-15) in writing. Any VAT incurred on costs relating to the supplies in question becomes exempt input tax and is in principle not recoverable under the partial exemption (PE) rules (except where it is within the de minimis limits).


There is no obligation on the part of local authorities to assert direct effect and exempt supplies of sporting facilities where it is not in their interests to do so.