Classification of High Speed Cameras

28 June 2011

A recent UK Tax Tribunal (Photron Europe) recently considered an appeal to the classification of high speed cameras. These cameras are intended to be used to capture a sequence of images which occur in relatively short periods of time, e.g., a car crash, where it is able to slow down the playback rate in order that the event is played back in slow motion.

The tax payer argued these items should be classified as Digital Cameras which are free of duty, whereas HMRC thought they should be classified as Video Camera Recorders which are subject to duty at 4.9%.The tribunal ruled in favour of the tax payer finding that in both its properties and its use the high speed cameras met with the definition of “digital camera”, that is a camera that captures and records in digital format still photographic pictures.

The tribunal also took the unusual step of criticising HMRC in its practice of taking the matter to Customs Code Committee and I recommend you look at our other article “Uneven Playing Field”

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