HMRC denied Supreme Court appeal against Sportech £95 million tax claim

HMRCIssuing a market update, Sportech Plc has announced that the UK Court of Appeal has denied HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) permission to appeal the decision which ruled in Sportech’s favour regarding a £97 million tax repayment claim to the Supreme Court.

The decision by the Court of Appeal will likely end Sportech’s 7-year battle with HMRC regarding the tax claim which was originally filed in 2009 regarding Sportech’s £40 million VAT payments made on its ‘Spot the Ball’ competition winnings between 1979 and 1996.

Following a UK tribunal hearing, the original tax dispute ruled in favour of Sportech, declaring that the company was owed a total of £93 million (original claim + simple interest).

However, in 2014 HMRC would successfully re-contest the payment at an upper-tribunal forcing Sportech to repay a £95 million charge. Sportech governance moved to contest the charge.

This May the UK Court of Appeal ruled unanimously in favour of Sportech’s case against HMRC, a decision which the authority would immediately contest urging for an appeal to the Court of Justice.

This week the UK Court of Appeal denied HMRC its motion, the tax authority now has the option of applying directly to the Supreme Court for permission to appeal against the decision of the Court of Appeal and has until 17th June 2016 to make such application

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