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How To Apply for VAT Relief When You Are Disabled

By IntFormalities
Updated on November 27, 2023
Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

Financial stability is a crucial concern for individuals with disabilities, and the UK recognizes this challenge by offering valuable support mechanisms. Among these provisions is VAT relief, designed to alleviate financial burdens for disabled individuals. Join us as we walk you through everything you need to know about VAT relief in the UK while we guide you through the application process.

How to Apply for VAT Relief When You Are Disabled
People with disabilities or chronic illnesses can access items made for personal or domestic use without the VAT added to their final price

What Is VAT Relief?

Almost every product in the UK has a VAT (Value Added Tax) attached to it. This means that, as a consumer, you may end up paying more for a given product. However, this can be avoided if you are disabled. VAT exemption for disabled persons is a service that allows people with disabilities or chronic illnesses to access items made for personal or domestic use without the VAT added to their final price.

Who Is Exempt from Paying VAT?

In order to qualify for VAT exemption, you must be terminally ill, have a chronic sickness or suffer from a long-term disability. You must also be a UK citizen or resident to access this service. Regardless of your employment status, you can seek VAT exemption for items deemed necessary for daily use once the HM Revenue and Customs office ascertains your claim.

If you are elderly or temporarily disabled, you don’t qualify for this service.

Requirements and Documentation Needed

You do not need to provide evidence of your disability to anyone when getting your support items VAT-free. However, you will need to fill out an eligibility declaration form with information regarding your condition. Essential details you must key into that document include:

  • Identification details (full name and address)
  • Disability or chronic illness you suffer from
  • Signature

How Can You Claim VAT Back If You Are Disabled?

Normally, the store you visit to purchase your products will provide an eligibility declaration form, but you can also find this online on the government revenue and customs website. You should complete your section and leave the rest to the supplier. Once you’ve completed this, leave the form with the supplier for record keeping.

If you would like to make your home disabled-friendly, you should contact your local council for assistance. You will have to provide your postcode on the website to determine where you will visit for further assistance.

Can Your Application Be Rejected?

It’s the supplier’s work to confirm that all customers aiming to get disabled VAT exemption items from their store are disabled. So, if they feel you do not fit the bill, they can reject your application for VAT-free purchases. If this happens, you can try getting the same service from a different supplier.

Notably, losing access to this service is possible if you use the waiver for unintended purposes. Of course, you can combine this with other government programs like PIP, Universal Credit, Employment and Support Allowance, among others.

If you experience a change in circumstances, you should send a letter or call the DM revenue and customs office and cease using the disabled vat relief for disabled people when getting other equipment from the supplier.

How Much Can You Expect To Avoid Paying?

The amount you pay for each product depends on what item you’re getting. The rule of thumb is that you won’t have the 20% exercise duty imposed on your bill when checking out. However, it is vital to note that not all products have the disability VAT exemption tag pinned to them. Here is a list of the most common vat free items for disabled people:

  • Boats
  • Computer equipment
  • Disabled-specific goods
  • Emergency alarm call system
  • Hearing and low vision aids
  • Medical appliances
  • Parts and accessories
  • Specialists’ beds, chairs, stair lifts, rise and recline seats
  • Wheelchairs for the invalid and mobility scooters (particular models)
  • Wigs

Validity And Processing Time

The vat reduction disability program is valid for a lifetime if you have a chronic disease or disability. However, you can cease to have access to this service if you are reported to have had a change in your circumstances. There isn’t a processing time since you do not have to send an application letter to the revenue and customs office to access VAT relief.

Pay Less for Your Purchased Goods

The UK government intends to help all its people, including the disabled and chronically ill. Thanks to VAT relief, those who qualify could avoid paying an average of 20% on products intended for domestic and personal use. This also applies to items needed to improve mobility, hearing, or communication.

We hope you now know everything you need to get VAT relief in your future purchases. For more information, you can visit the official gov.uk webpage.

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