VAT on Protection Services

VAT Question

My client is a business providing security services. A potential customer based in the UAE is coming to England to attend a conference being held in London and they looking to engage my client to provide personal protection services during their stay. As all of the protection services will be provided in England does my client charge VAT?

VAT Answer

Under the Place of supply of services rules (POSS), there are a few steps we need to go through to determine the VAT liability. Firstly, we need to establish whether the services are supplied Business to Business (B2B) or Business to Consumer (B2C).

If the services are being billed to the company in the UAE it’s a B2B supply. Under the B2B rules the provision of bodyguarding services would follow the general B2B rule for services and the liability would be where the business customer is located. If the B2B customer is based outside of Great Britain the supply will be outside the scope (OSS) of GB VAT.

Incidentally, the only B2B supplies charged “where performed” is the selling of tickets to an event but this is clearly not what your client will be providing.

However, if the individual attending the event were paying for the personal protection services themselves (B2C), then the “where performed” rules would apply, and the liability would be where the services were actually being carried out. As these will be performed in Great Britain, the services provided would be within the scope of GB VAT and SR VAT would need to be charged.

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