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  6. Are fees for swearing oaths, affidavits and taking declarations subject to VAT?

Are fees for swearing oaths, affidavits and taking declarations subject to VAT?

As an assistant solicitor on a busy high street, I am asked to swear numerous oaths, affidavits and to take declarations. I charge £5 for the oath and £2 for any exhibits which my firm allows me to keep. Are these charges subject to VAT?

No. By agreement between the Law Society and HM Customs & Excise, oath fees retained personally by associate or assistant solicitors are not subject to VAT unless the associate or assistant solicitor is:

i) registered or liable to register for VAT as a result of the aggregate of taxable supplies made to their own account or
ii) required to account to their firm for oath fees received, in which case the fees should be dealt with as part of the firm's taxable turnover.

Please see the Law Society publication Execution of Documents 3rd Edition.

Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information in this article, it does not constitute legal advice and cannot be relied upon as such. The Law Society does not accept any responsibility for liabilities arising as a result of reliance upon the information given.

Have you got a practice question? Call the Practice Advice Service on 020 7320 5675 or email practiceadvice@lawsociety.org.uk

The Practice Advice Service is staffed Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm.

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