(scotland) Limited
  • 0141 636 9353
  • 0141 636 9490
  • 0141 636 9492

A successful First Tier Tribunal appeal over a c. £70,900 HMRC penalty for being one day late with a VAT return and payment has opened up opportunities for challenging VAT surcharge notices unfairly issued by HMRC.

The appellant, Trinity Mirror, failed to file its VAT return and make a VAT payment on time.

Consequently, HMRC imposed a default surcharge of 2% of its defaults (originally £95,900 but later reduced to £70,906.44).

Trinity Mirror appealed against the surcharge, claiming it did not comply with the EU principle of proportionality.

In the absence of any mechanism to allow the amount of the penalty to be altered, the FTT allowed the appeal and discharged the penalty altogether.

Who is potentially affected 

  • Businesses who have received and paid a default surcharge penalty assessment in the past four years; and
  • Businesses who believe they may receive a penalty from HMRC in relation to late payment of VAT/filing of their VAT returns.

How can VAT Services (Scotland) Ltd help you 

  • Review the factual position and assess extent of a likely successful challenge to HMRC in relation to default surcharge penalties; and 
  • Assist businesses with a best-practice approach in ensuring future VAT compliance and thus avoiding default surcharge penalties altogether.

Contact us

Should you wish further information on the above, please do not hesitate to contact Gary using the details outlined below.


Gary Moore
Direct line 0141 636 9353
Mobile 07812 061 582
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