If it looks like a Van is it possible that it is in fact a Car.

If it looks like a Van is it possible that it is in fact a Car.

The distinction between whether a vehicle is a car or a van is important for the purposes of whether an employee is subject to tax on a benefit in kind provided by his or her employer.

Coca Cola supplied employees estate cars but in 1997 decided that employees needed vans. The users claimed that these vehicles were vans and therefore the benefit was not subject to the more draconian benefit in kind rules that apply to cars as opposed to vans.

What is a van?

Under ITEPA 2003 s115 it is a vehicle primarily suited for the conveyance of goods or burden of any description. In order to determine whether a vehicle is a van, the courts have decided that if a vehicle is more suitable for the conveyance of goods than for any other use, then the vehicle is primarily suited for the conveyance of goods.

The First Tier Tribunal were able to determine that a Vauxhall Vivaro is a van and a VW Kombi is a car.

The Upper Tier Tribunal stated that the question of whether a Vauxhall Vivaro was a van or not was “finely balanced” and confirmed the ruling of the lower court.

Equally it held that the VW Kombi was a car citing the vehicle configuration (the vehicle had a seat in front for the driver and a passenger) as being significant.

What do you think?

Having spent 15 years advising motor dealers about VAT matters, Michelle remains confident that VAT is a simple tax. “These rules have served me well to date and hopefully might provide you with a template too”

In case of any questions please contact at Michelle.Malone@ase-global.com
Tel:  +44 (0)161 493 1930