Settlement in the ATP case concerning VAT
Plesner conducted the case concerning services provided by ATP PensionService to pension funds being exempt from VAT. ATP PensionService and the Danish Customs and Tax Administration (SKAT) have now settled the case following the judgment passed by the ECJ in March 2014, which upheld ATP PensionService's claim that its services are exempt from VAT as they were services concerning payment transactions or as management of unit trusts.
The settlement entails that the Danish Customs and Tax Administration (SKAT) recognises that the services are exempt from VAT and repays an amount in the triple-digit million range to ATP PensionService. The company passes the amount on to the pension funds that actually paid the VAT amount.
The Danish Customs and Tax Administration (SKAT) is expected to arrange for the guidelines to go out for consultation shortly.
During the proceedings ATP PensionService claimed that the services to the pension funds could be exempt from VAT as services concerning payment transactions or as administration of unit trusts.
In the autumn of 2012 the Danish Eastern High Court referred the issue of the construction of the underlying VAT directives to the ECJ and in March 2014 the ECJ found in favour of the company as it ruled that the company's services to the pension funds can be exempt from VAT as services concerning payment transactions or as administration of unit trusts.
ATP PensionService and the Danish Ministry of Taxation's settlement entails that the Ministry acknowledges the VAT exemption concerning the company's services to the pension funds and repays millions to the company. The amount will be repaid to the pension funds to which the company provided the services and which actually paid the VAT amount, including PensionDanmark, which was ATP PensionService's biggest customer and the driving force behind the case.
Plesner, which conducted the case before the Danish Eastern High Court and the ECJ, has regularly received requests from the financial sector and providers to financial institutions about the scope of the judgment since it was passed by the ECJ.
The settlement means that the implementation of the EU judgment can be initiated in respect of the rest of the financial sector and its providers.
If you would like to learn more about the consequences of this case, please contact attorney-at-law Svend Erik Holm, attorney-at-law Mette Juul, attorney-at-law Thomas Gønge or attorney-at-law Tom Kári Kristjánsson.