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Commercial vehicle purchases and VAT

Are you about to buy a second-hand commercial vehicle?

When you buy a new commercial vehicle, you will pay 20% VAT on the purchase price and in most cases this VAT can be reclaimed. This assumes of course, that the motor trader selling you the vehicle is VAT registered.

But if you buy a second-hand commercial vehicle there are three potential VAT options:

  • The second-hand dealer is not registered for VAT and therefore, you will not be charged VAT.
  • The second-hand dealer is registered for VAT and only charges you VAT on the profit he is making on the sale under the VAT margin scheme, in which case you will not be provided with a VAT invoice and you cannot reclaim the VAT charged.
  • The second-hand dealer is registered for VAT and charges you VAT at 20% on the sale price. In this case you will get a VAT invoice and can reclaim the VAT charged.


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