The Upper Tribunal (Mrs Justice Smith v UT Judge Greenbank) has dismissed a classification appeal brought by Build-a-Bear concerning HMRC’s charging of customs duty and import VAT on product imported into the United Kingdom. The key issue turned on whether items of clothing, footwear and wigs sold by the Company to be used with its bears and dolls were parts and accessories of dolls, or parts and accessories of toys.

In its detailed decision (here), the Tribunal analysed the surrounding European and domestic case-law before finding for HMRC on those issues. HMRC were represented by Owain Thomas QC and Paul Reynolds.

Owain and Paul’s practice covers all areas of UK VAT law and other areas of UK indirect tax law.