Clubs of all sizes will encounter VAT in their everyday activities whether registered for VAT purposes or not. It is important that clubs are fully aware of the potential costs which VAT can create and arrange the way the club works to minimise the impact in terms of both cost and time spent dealing with it. Failure to deal with VAT adequately can create costs not only of additional VAT but can also give rise to fines and interest charges for failure to comply on a timely basis.
VAT is a tax on business transactions and although most rugby clubs are not for profit organisations, and may be either a Community Amateur Sports Club (CASC) or charity, they invariably are involved in certain business activities. These could include the provision of facilities to members for a subscription, operation of bar and catering facilities, letting of the clubhouse or the letting of sports facilities.
VAT recovery is particularly problematic when clubs embark on capital projects such as the construction of new changing rooms and clubhouses or improvements and additions to pitches.
To help rugby clubs understand the rules and regulations surrounding VAT, the RFU has produced A Guide to VAT for Rugby Clubs and support case studies:
VAT Guide Rugby Club Case Studies
The RFU has engaged the services of Russell Moore, a former partner at leading sports advisory accountants Saffery Champness, to provide a VAT helpline service to clubs. The first 30 minutes of advice is free to clubs with any additional services provided at greatly reduced rates.
Clubs can contact the helpline either by calling Russell on 07710 329317 or by emailing their enquiry to firstname.lastname@example.org .