Plain-Talk Print products and their VAT status, standard rated, zero rated, Value Added Tax
 
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List of Printed Items and
VAT Liability

Generally speaking, leaflets, flyers and booklets are not subject to VAT, whereas other printed items are. There are exceptions, however, and this section is intended to help you decide whether your item will be subject to VAT or not.

In brief

Essentially, a leaflet or flyer will attract VAT if:

  • it offers a discount or free gift/entry/drink etc.;
  • it is intended to be used as something other than a leaflet (eg. a calendar or placemat);
  • it has areas for completion that comprise more than 25% of the total area of the sheet.

Otherwise, the leaflet or flyer will be zero-rated for VAT.

Common articles and their VAT liability

Tip: Press Ctrl-F to activate your browser's Find facility to search for particular keywords in this list.

Important: This list is taken from HMCE VAT Notice 701/10 with the accompanying introduction:

In the list below we give our views of the liability of items which are commonly the subject of queries about the zero-rating for books etc.

However, you should not assume that an article is zero-rated under group 3 just because it is not shown as standard-rated in the list, or determine liability by referring only to this list.

You must satisfy yourself by reference to the general body of guidance in this notice that the product qualifies for zero-rating under one of the items of Group 3 (reproduced at paragraph 1.3 [of VAT Notice 701/10]).

Where reference is made in this table to particular paragraphs, these may be found in VAT Notice 701/10, downloadable from the HMCE website.

 

Item

Liability

Acceptance cards

Standard-rated

Account Books

Standard-rated

Accounts (fully printed)

Zero-rated

Address books

Standard-rated

Advertising leaflets

Zero-rated

Agendas (fully printed)

Zero-rated

Albums

Standard-rated

Almanacs

Zero-rated

Amendment slips

Standard-rated

Amendments (loose-leaf)

Zero-rated

Announcement cards

Standard-rated

Annuals

Zero-rated

Antique books

Zero-rated

Antique maps

Zero-rated

Appointment cards

Standard-rated

Articles of association (complete in booklet form)

Zero-rated

Astronomical charts

Zero-rated

Atlases

Zero-rated

Autograph albums (uncompleted)

Standard-rated

Autograph books (completed)

Zero-rated

Badges

Standard-rated

Bags, paper

Standard-rated

Ballot papers

Standard-rated

Bankers' drafts

Standard-rated

Bibliographies

Zero-rated

Billheads

Standard-rated

Bills of lading

Standard-rated

Bills of quantity (blank)

Standard-rated

Bills of quantity (completed)

Zero-rated

Binders

Standard-rated (but see paragraph 5.2)

Bingo cards

Standard-rated

Biorhythm charts

Standard-rated

Blotters

Standard-rated

Book covers

Standard-rated

Book marks

Standard-rated

Book tokens

Standard-rated

Booklets

Zero-rated

Bookmakers' tickets

Standard-rated

Books

Zero-rated

Brochures

Zero-rated

Bulletins

Zero-rated

Business cards

Standard-rated

Calendars

Standard-rated

Catalogues

Zero-rated

Certificates

Standard-rated

Charts (geographical or topographical)

Zero-rated

Cheques and cheque books

Standard-rated

Cigarette cards

Standard-rated

Circulars

Zero-rated

Cloakroom tickets

Standard-rated

Colour cards

Standard-rated

Colouring books (children's)

Zero-rated

Comics

Zero-rated

Company accounts and reports

Zero-rated

Compliment slips

Standard-rated

Copy books

Standard-rated

Correspondence cards

Standard-rated

Coupon books

Standard-rated

Coupons

Standard-rated

Credit cards

Standard-rated

Crossword books

Zero-rated

Delivery notes

Standard-rated

Diaries (completed)

Zero-rated

Diaries (unused)

Standard-rated

Dictionaries

Zero-rated

Directories (completed)

Zero-rated

Dividend warrants

Standard-rated

Dressmaking patterns

Standard-rated

Election addresses

Zero-rated

Encyclopaedias

Zero-rated

Engineers' plans

Standard-rated

Envelopes

Standard-rated

Exercise books

Standard-rated

Fashion drawings

Standard-rated

Flash cards

Standard-rated

Folders

Standard-rated

Football pool coupons

Standard-rated

Football programmes

Zero-rated

Form letters

Standard-rated (but see paragraph 4.3)

Forms

Standard-rated

Framed decorative maps

Standard-rated

Games

Standard-rated

Geological maps

Zero-rated

Globes

Standard-rated

Graph paper

Standard-rated

Greetings cards

Standard-rated

Handbills

Zero-rated

Holiday and tourist guides

Zero-rated

Hydrographical charts

Zero-rated

Hymn books

Zero-rated

Index cards

Standard-rated

Inlay cards for cassette, CD or video

Standard-rated

Instruction manuals

Zero-rated

Insurance cover notes

Standard-rated

Invitation cards

Standard-rated

Invoices

Standard-rated

Journals

Zero-rated

Labels

Standard-rated

Leaflets

Zero-rated

Letter headings

Standard-rated

Letters (handwritten)

Standard-rated

Log books (blank)

Standard-rated

Loose leaf books

Zero-rated

Lottery tickets and cards

Standard-rated

Magazines

Zero-rated

Mail order catalogues

Zero-rated

Manuals

Zero-rated

Manuscript paper

Standard-rated

Manuscripts

Standard-rated

Maps

Zero-rated

Medical records

Standard-rated

Membership cards

Standard-rated

Memo pads

Standard-rated

Memoranda of association (completed in booklet form)

Zero-rated

Memorial cards

Standard-rated

Menu cards

Standard-rated

Microfiche

Standard-rated

Microfilm

Standard-rated

Microform copies

Standard-rated

Missals

Zero-rated

Monographs

Zero-rated

Music

Zero-rated

Music rolls

Standard-rated

Music scores

Zero-rated

Newspapers

Zero-rated

Note books, pads and paper

Standard-rated

Order books and forms

Standard-rated

Orders of Service

Zero-rated

Painting books (children's)

Zero-rated

Pamphlets

Zero-rated

Paper, unprinted

Standard-rated

Parts of books (see paragraph 4.4)

Standard-rated

Pattern cards

Standard-rated

Periodicals

Zero-rated

Photograph albums

Standard-rated

Photographs

Standard-rated

Picture books

Zero-rated

Plans

Standard-rated (but see paragraph 3.10)

Playing cards

Standard-rated

Poll cards

Standard-rated

Pools coupons

Standard-rated

Postcards (whether completed or not)

Standard-rated

Poster magazines (see paragraph 3.6)

Zero-rated

Posters

Standard-rated

Prayer books

Zero-rated

Price cards and tags

Standard-rated

Price lists (fully printed leaflets or brochures)

Zero-rated

Printed pictures

Standard-rated

Programmes

Zero-rated

Questionnaires

Standard-rated

Rag books (children's)

Zero-rated

Receipt books and forms

Standard-rated

Recipe books

Zero-rated

Record books

Standard-rated

Record labels

Standard-rated

Record sleeves

Standard-rated

Registers

Standard-rated

Rent books

Standard-rated

Reply-paid coupons and envelopes

Standard-rated

Reproductions of paintings

Standard-rated

Road maps

Zero-rated

Score cards

Standard-rated

Scrap books (blank)

Standard-rated

Scrap books (completed)

Zero-rated

Scrolls (hand-written)

Standard-rated

Seals

Standard-rated

Shade cards (unless they contain substantial printed text)

Standard-rated

Share certificates

Standard-rated

Ships' logs (completed)

Zero-rated

Sports programmes

Zero-rated

Staff journals

Zero-rated

Stamp albums (whether completed or not)

Standard-rated

Stationery

Standard-rated

Stationery books

Standard-rated

Stickers

Standard-rated

Swatch books

Standard-rated

Swatch cards

Standard-rated

Sweepstake tickets

Standard-rated

Tags

Standard-rated

Temperature charts

Standard-rated

Text books

Zero-rated

Theses

Zero-rated

Tickets

Standard-rated

Time cards and sheets

Standard-rated

Timetables (in book or leaflet form)

Zero-rated

Tokens

Standard-rated (but see paragraph 5.4)

Topographical plans

Zero-rated

Toys

Standard-rated

Tracts

Zero-rated

Trade catalogues

Zero-rated

Trade directories

Zero-rated

Transcripts

Standard-rated

Transfers

Standard-rated

Transparencies

Standard-rated

Travel brochures

Zero-rated

Visiting cards

Standard-rated

Vouchers

Standard-rated

Wall charts

Standard-rated

Waste paper

Standard-rated

Wills

Standard-rated

Winding cards

Standard-rated

Wrapping paper

Standard-rated

Wreath cards

Standard-rated

More information

For more detailed information, please download the current VAT Notice 701/10 from the HMCE website.

Help with specific questions

Please call 01457 778404 if you have questions and would like free, no-obligation information and advice about whether your print project is likely to be subject to VAT.


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