This is our UK Guide to zero VAT on certain printed items
The Value Added Tax Act 1994, section 30 provides for the zero-rating of goods listed in Schedule 8 of the Act.
3.1 Books and booklets (zero rated)
Note: 'School work books and other educational texts in question and answer format, are zero-rated because the spaces provided for the insertion of answers are incidental to the essential character of the book or booklet. The same applies to exam papers in question and answer format provided they qualify as books, booklets, brochures, pamphlets or leaflets'.
3.2 Brochures and pamphlets (zero rated)
All zero rated including:
Single sheet brochures and "Wallet" type brochures designed with a flap may be zero-rated provided they:
3.3 Leaflets (zero rated)
'Consist of a single sheet of paper not greater than international standard A4 in size (larger publications up to A2 size can be zero-rated provided that they are printed on both sides, folded down to A4 size or smaller and meet the other conditions)'. i.e. Restaurant menus printed (not laminated)
3.6 Journals and periodicals (zero rated)
May contain information of a specialised nature (for example legal, medical, financial, commercial, fashion or sporting) or be of more general interest. They are normally a mixture of articles and stories with the content changed for each edition. Although they consist essentially of reading matter, they may also consist mainly of illustrations or advertising matter.
3.7 Children's picture books (zero rated)
Any childrens book 'provided it is not a 'toy' as defined as such. i.e. cut out or 'pop up' games may be excluded.
3.10 Maps, charts and topographical plans (zero rated)
Only 'MAPS' are zero rated wholly. Anything else not.
Public Point-of-Sales (POS) or Exhibition display poster prints are NOT zero rated.
4.6 Supplies to charities (zero rated)
Certain printed items that are not within the group 3 zero-rating and are therefore usually standard-rated, may be zero-rated when supplied to charities for use in connection with collecting monetary donations. For details see Notice 701/58 Charity advertising and goods connected with collecting donations.
5.1 Incidental articles supplied with zero-rated items (zero rated)
Minor accessories for example dust covers, clasps, book marks, slip cases and presentation cases, supplied with any zero-rated items, are usually regarded as forming part of the zero-rated
5.2 Binders and folders (zero rated)
Ring-binders and similar binders supplied on their own are zero-rated if they are designed to contain a loose-leaf book, provided the exact title of that book is printed on the outside. A company name alone is not enough for zero-rating. A binder supplied with loose-leaf pages to make a book is treated as part of the zero-rated supply whether titled or not.
6.6 The package test for charities (zero rated)
6.7 Promotional items in magazines (zero rated)
Must be linked to the cover and promoted by the publisher.
8. Liability of some common items (all zero rated below)
THIS IS NOT AN AUTHORITATIVE GUIDE AND HAS BEEN SELECTIVELY EDITED.
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