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VAT Claim Back - How Please??

(12 Posts)
RockinHippy Wed 21-Sep-16 13:59:35

DD(13) needs to use an iPad for written work due to Hypermobile painful hands (EDS). We have earlier OT reports supporting this etc, plus a GP letter somewhere, she also currently gets a level of DLA

School have been great, she is just back after a very long absence & I can't fault the support - the problem is DD herself who is a stubborn moo I suspect due to earlier Primary School issues with bullying, refuses point blank to accept the help offered, insisting she is "fine" she isn't hmm

She has been told she can ask teachers for the iPad in each class, but she refuses point blank to ask at all, insisting the writing in each class isn't long enough - but its accumulative & I see her getting headaches etc as a result.

She wont accept/ask for help carrying books around either, which will no doubt get worse as she mives onto GCSEs etc

Sooooo - its her birthday next week - we've realised the only way around this is to provide her with her own iPad Air (lighter), so no need to ask & the kindle/ iBooks will cut down on bag weight too.

I've heard that we can go VAT/Claim it back? As its an aid she needs for her disability, but have no clue how to go about this ??

What do I need to do & what proof do I need to provide ??

TIAflowers

zzzzz Wed 21-Sep-16 14:46:01

Never heard of this but watching with interest.

gigglingHyena Wed 21-Sep-16 14:59:22

I've done this on a few things, but they have been medical bits and pieces, where the company has handled it all. I just filled in the form when ordering.

As I understand it though you can only claim for adapted items or things which wouldn't be used by someone without a disability. For example I can't claim VAT relief on glucose tablets, even though I'm using them for a medical condition (diabtetes) they have plenty of other uses.

I have a feeling we investiagted it when buying DSs iPad a couple of years ago and concluded it didn't fit the criteria
www.gov.uk/financial-help-disabled/vat-relief

It might be worth thinking about a reconditioned one. We bought DSs from the argos returns on ebay, I doubt it had ever been out of the box. Biggest risk we felt was that the battery life might not be that good, but the price difference was enough that we took the risk.

RockinHippy Wed 21-Sep-16 15:24:50

Thank youflowersflowers

Ive just spotted there are more pages on the link & computer equipment DOES qualify smile

See photo ...

Seems from that its down to the shop to sort out the discount & they may have a form yo fill in, I will pop into our MAC shop & ask as we have a week

& thanks for the advice as to buying a recon - I did look into that, Apple do recons too, but if we get the VAT discount, then there is very little difference in price, for a bigger memory, longer guarantee & its lighter too, which is important.

I'm really not keen on buying recon from anywhere other than Apple as I've had problems with that before

we actually have an old iPad that belonged to my dad here, that we just can't get into. He bought it from a legit non Apple source. Ive managed to repair it, but the Apple ID its linked to is blocked & the email address doesn't exist anymore, he's forgotten the security questions etc, so even though Apple have been very helpful & do keep trying, its now useless, not helped by the fact it was registered to the Ukraine - if it had been bought from Apple, they can find & reactivate by the receipt, so it would be working again

RockinHippy Wed 21-Sep-16 15:29:07

Also the way DD goes through phone chargers, hmm we figure buying a new one would partially pay for itself there too as they replace chargers for free during the 2 year garantee - shes now on her 5th iphone oneshock so thats £75 saved already smile

PolterGoose Wed 21-Sep-16 17:35:18

Apple do student discounts which would be worth a look, it's not as much off an iPad as a Mac but not to be sniffed at.

Anker lightening connectors are very good and sturdier than the crap Apple ones.

Claennister Wed 21-Sep-16 17:59:54

Unfortuately, to a greater extent it is the product and not the person which is eligible for VAT relief. It has to be a product which has been designed with the needs of a disabled person in mind, so computer equipment can indeed qualify, but only when it's things like an adapted mouse, eye control hardware, switches, that kind of thing. It's often possible to zero rate a computer which is purchased from a specialist supplier with such things and at the same time as part of a package. A mainstream product other than one purchased under such circumtances cannot qualify even if it was bought specifically to meet the needs of a disabled person. It's pretty much up to the inventor or manufacturer to declare whether they think the goods are eligible. If the goods are eligible, then you must have an eligible individual purchasing them directly and with their own money and for their own use.

The only chance you have at zero rating on an iPad is if you go to a specialist supplier and purchase an iPad as part of a package which includes software specially designed to support a disabled person. Unless you need the software, there's zippo chance that it will turn out cheaper, as that kind of software is hundreds and you would only get 20% VAT exemption.

I'm pretty sure it's essential to claim at the time of purchase too, but maybe not as I was once charged VAT in error on imported disability goods and was able to get a refund.

zzzzz Wed 21-Sep-16 19:52:55

iPads come with lots of that sort of software as standard. Eg voice command, gesture etc

Claennister Wed 21-Sep-16 21:58:48

>iPads come with lots of that sort of software as standard. Eg voice command, gesture etc

Indeed they do, but the very fact that it is standard makes the iPad itself ineligible. You have to be purchasing it as part of a bundle which includes add on, external software which was specifically designed for a disabled person. It qualifies as a sundry item, like the batteries to go in a special alarm clock for a deaf person are sometimes zero rated when purchased with the clock but attract full vat every other time, even though they're for the same clock. As a solo purchase, an iPad or other mainstream computer product is never eligible.

The rules are nonsensical and patchy, there are catalogues where a long handled sponge for wasting your feet is zero rate eligible and a long handled foot washing brush is not, because the second person designed it for a general audience of anyone who has terrible reaching their feet, not specifically for disabled people who can't reach their feet. If you're looking for the rules to make sense, you're out of luck. 😔

Claennister Wed 21-Sep-16 22:27:40

Auto correct all over that, sorry

RockinHippy Thu 22-Sep-16 01:17:51

Thank you for the replies smile

I have done a bit more research & its certainly confusing.

I have found info on the HMRC website that agrees with your comments & states that it isn't allowed as computers generally aren't designed solely for disabled use - I will add a screen shot below

THEN I go & find people on a local health group who HAVE managed to get nil VAT on computers, including iPads at the local MAC shop & read online, including the Apple Forums that others have in other areas too confused Generally most of the nil VAT is discretionary according to the vendor, so fingers crossed

So it seems like it is worth trying - I found - THIS FORM - to fill in & take with me & I will clip a copy of the OT report page explaining she needs to use a keyboard for writing tasks ( might be useful to one of you too)

I will report back & let you know how I get on

RockinHippy Thu 22-Sep-16 01:21:27

It isn't letting me link properly, so heres the screenshot...

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