Uber: UK barrister sues for £20m in unpaid VAT

What’s happened?

A UK barrister has said he’s suing Uber as it owes tens of millions in backdated VAT.

Jolyon Maugham QC, a barrister at Devereux Chambers and founder of The Good Law Project, is suing Uber over the backdated VAT to find out “whether HMRC treats these big US multinationals including Uber with kid gloves.”

Maugham told ITV news that the company should be paying VAT on its services, the firm owes just under £20m for 2015 in London alone.

HMRC are able to claim for up to four previous years’ worth of tax, the total bill could be huge.

If the action goes ahead in the UK, it’s likely that Uber could face similar costs across the EU.

The company also just lost a similar case in Australia where the court ruled it must pay the Australian VAT equivalent.

Maugham also claims that “Uber has undoubtedly arranged its business model to minimise its tax liability — dodge taxes, if you like — and to minimise the workers’ rights that it has to offer.”

He’s also claiming the money on behalf of the UK tax payer.

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