High Court judgment in Littlewoods case

01 March 2014
Author: JHA

The decision of the High Court in the Littlewoods case on the availability of compound interest on claims for the recovery of unlawfully levied VAT was handed down today by Mr Justice Henderson. The Claimants have been successful. The judgment has significance for all EU claims where compound interest is sought.

In the lengthy judgment, Henderson J confirmed that claimants with claims founded in EU law are entitled an “adequate indemnity” for the loss they suffered by paying the undue VAT measured by reference to compound interest. The judge, in rejecting HMRC’s arguments, has concluded that the actual use to which Government may have put the amounts of overpaid tax is irrelevant.

A hearing to determine the wording of the final order will take place on 30 April 2014. This matter is very likely to proceed on appeal to the Court of Appeal.

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