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UK reverse charge on specific goods

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UK reverse charge on specific goods

Domestic reverse charge may also apply on certain goods and services in the UK. The conditions and scope change for each type of goods. This regime is often introduced on products that are likely to be used for carousel fraud purposes.

This type of reverse charge applies to mobile phones, computer chips, gas and electricy and emission allowances. In all cases, the customer must be VAT registered in the UK. It does not matter if the supplier is VAT registered or not. There are further conditions about the scope for each kind of supply:

Mobile phones: This includes accessories sold as a package and any device used as a mobile phone. For more information about the definition, please see notice 735.

There is a de minimis threshold of £5,000 for reverse charge on mobile phones to apply. This limit is calculated on an invoice basis and once exceeded, the reverse charge amount is the full invoice amount (the first £5,000 are not excluded).  

Computer chips: This includes all computer chips falling in the commodity code: 8542 3190 00. This excludes laptops, desktops, servers and similar units.

Gas and electricity: This applies to wholesale supplies of gas and electricity between counterparties based in the UK. More information about the scope is available in section 3.4. of Notice 735.

Emission allowances: This refers to those compliance market credits which can be used to meet obligations under the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EUETS)


Regarding your invoices, they should comply with all UK invoice requirements. VAT will not be charged on the invoice. Instead, a reference to reverse charge should be stated. The following legend is suggested by HMRC:

Customer to account to HMRC for the reverse charge output tax on the VAT exclusive price of items marked reverse charge