Lloyd v Google LLC: Supreme Court closes floodgates on opt-out data protection claims
On 10 November 2021, the Supreme Court delivered its judgment in Lloyd v Google LLC  UKSC 50, finding unanimously in favour of Google and rejecting the claim brought by Mr Lloyd on behalf of himself and over 4 million other iPhone users in respect of alleged breaches of data protection law.
The judgment will come as a significant relief to data controllers of all sizes who, following the Court of Appeal’s decision, faced the prospect of large-scale data claims. The Supreme Court’s discussion of the representative claim procedure will also be of interest to anyone involved in multi-party litigation.
Autumn Budget 2021: effects on tax disputes
On 27 October 2021, the Rt Hon Rishi Sunak MP, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, unveiled the contents of the Autumn Budget 2021. This comes after the International Monetary Fund (IMF) published its world economic forecast on 12 October 2021. The IMF expects the British economy to grow 6.8% in 2021 and 5.0% in 2022.1 During 2021, the UK GDP is expected to grow more strongly than that of France (6.3%), the US (6.0%), Italy (5.8%), Spain (5.7%), and Germany (3.1%). In this context, the UK government is in a good position to strengthen the protection of the public revenue whilst tackling the growing inequalities intensified by the pandemic.
The present article focuses on those specific measures that might have an effect on tax disputes.
Test Claimants in the Franked Investment Income GLO v HMRC
On 23 July 2021, the Supreme Court (“UKSC”) delivered its decision in Test Claimants in the Franked Investment Income Group Litigation v HMRC  UKSC 31. This is the third judgment given by the UKSC in this long-running litigation concerning the tax treatment of dividends received by UK-resident companies from non-resident subsidiaries, compared with those paid and received within wholly UK-resident groups of companies.
This note discusses the three most significant issues – in financial terms – that were decided by the UKSC: (1) the remedy for claims in respect of unduly levied Advance Corporation Tax (“ACT”), which had been set off against lawful mainstream corporation tax (“MCT”); (2) the lawfulness of the UK statutory provisions which prevented double taxation relief (“DTR”) from being carried forward; and (3) whether HMRC could set off payments of tax credits which had been made to the claimants’ shareholders against the restitution due to the claimants for unlawful ACT.
An Assessment to Tax is never ‘stale’, but it might be out of date: HMRC v Tooth
This article briefly discusses the key points arising out of the decision of the UK Supreme Court in HMRC v Tooth  UKSC 17. The case considered (1) whether a discovery assessment could become “stale” and (2) the meaning of the phrase “deliberate inaccuracy”.
VATA 1994 s.47, Agency, Onward Supply Relief, & Double Taxation
On 12 July 2021, the First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber) (“FTT”) released its decision in Scanwell Logistics (UK) Limited v HMRC  UKFTT 261 (TC), rejecting the taxpayer’s claim for onward supply relief (“OSR”).
Whilst OSR is now limited, post-Brexit, to goods imported into Northern Ireland for onward supply to the EU, the FTT’s discussion of agency under section 47 of the Value Added Tax Act 1994 (“VATA”) is of broader interest.
The case serves as a reminder of the significant financial consequences that can result from errors in tax planning, as Scanwell was ultimately held liable for £5.7 million in unpaid import VAT despite the fact that the imported goods almost immediately left the UK (which, if properly planned, could have meant Scanwell was relieved from liability to import VAT).