VAT relief for elderly and disabled people

 

You can claim VAT relief on certain goods if you’re disabled or over 60.

VAT relief for disabled people

You can claim VAT relief on equipment and appliances designed or adapted for use by people with a disability or long-term illness, such as:

  • adjustable beds
  • alarms
  • low vision aids or braille paper or low vision aids (but not contact lens or glasses)
  • medical appliances for severe injuries
  • mobility vehicles (purchase and leasing)
  • stair lifts, and
  • wheelchairs.

These items should be exempt from VAT, saving you 20%. Plus you shouldn’t be charged VAT on:

  • the installation
  • maintenance, repairs, spare parts or
  • accessories.

Qualifying for VAT relief

You’ll qualify for VAT relief if you:

  • have a chronic condition like diabetes
  • have a mental or physical mental impairment that affects your ability to carry out everyday activities, or
  • are terminally ill.

You won’t qualify if you’re temporarily disabled or elderly and able-bodied.

How to apply for VAT relief

When you’re buying a new appliance or piece of equipment, ask the supplier for their VAT exemption form. To pay the VAT exemption price, you have to supply the completed form when you place your order. If the supplier doesn’t have a form you can complete an eligibility declaration and give this to the supplier when you place your order.

 

VAT discount for over-60s

If you’re 60 or over, you should get a reduced rate of VAT (currently 5%) on the supply and installation of any:

  • built-in shower seats – or showers containing built-in shower seats
  • walk-in baths with sealable doors
  • grab rails
  • hoists
  • ramps
  • stair lifts, and
  • bath lifts.

The discount applies regardless of who orders or pays for the installation and equipment. You’ll only receive the VAT discount on the initial purchase and installation. If the item needs repairing or replacing in the future, you won’t get VAT relief.

Qualifying for the over-60s VAT reduction

You’ll qualify for VAT reduction if:

  • the product is bought and installed – there’s no VAT reduction if you buy the product but don’t get it installed
  • the product is for your home or a shared house but not a care home, and
  • you’re 60 or over when the product is purchased or installed.

How to apply for over-60s VAT reduction

While the VAT reduction should be applied by your supplier, you’ll have to confirm in writing that you qualify. They may give you a form or you can write a letter of declaration using the standard wording provided by gov.uk. If you’re not able to complete the form yourself, you can get someone else to complete it for you.

I [full name] of [the address where the installation is taking place] declare that I am aged 60 or over and that this supply and installation qualifies for the reduced rate of VAT in accordance with The Value Added Tax (Reduced Rate) Order 2007.

 

Find out more about VAT relief

To find out more about VAT relief and reductions available for disabled and older people, you can call HMRC on 0300 123 1073.

Lines are open Monday to Friday, from 8:30am to 5pm, except on bank holidays. Or you can send an online enquiry.