Rank PLC Gets Financial Boost

Big tax refund sees another obstacle

Following the successive rulings of the First-tier Tribunal’s tax chamber (formerly the VAT and Duties Tribunal) and the High Court, the UK-based online and land gambling group Rank plc has received GBP 74.8 million in overpaid VAT from Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs.

The sum includes VAT paid on games of bingo from 1973 to 1996, but the company also received notice that it will receive around GBP 79.5 million of interest relating to this claim later in the month.

However, before this happens, the European Court of Justice will have a final say in an appeal initiated by Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs. The appeal should be heard later in 2011, the group announced, adding that if HMRC is successful in its appeal, Rank will make the appropriate repayments.

Regarding these claims, which refer to the inconsistent application of VAT to bingo revenue generated by Rank’s businesses, it was specified that it is Rank’s contention that this inconsistency contravened the European Union’s principle of fiscal neutrality.

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