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HMRC internal manual

VAT Transfer of a going concern

HM Revenue & Customs
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Article 5 VAT (Special Provisions) Order 1995: Has there been the transfer of a business or just a sale of assets?: the contract of sale and other documentation

You should always look at the contract of sale which should tell you what the parties have agreed between them is being sold. You may find on occasions that no formal contract exists. This is particularly common when the seller and purchaser are closely linked. In these circumstances minutes of board meetings may provide additional information. However, statements in a contract that a transaction is, or is not, intended to be the transfer of a going concern do not decide the matter. While they may indicate the intentions of the parties, what actually has happened is more important.