The key issue seems to be whether the student is also receiving exempt education or vocational training (Item 3(b) of the legislation). You will only be able to determine this by reviewing the nature of the training scheme.
Have HMRC provided any further information as to why they accept the examination services are exempt?
Thanks for adding your thoughts les35
HMRC have not been contacted and i not have the detail of the discussions involved as there was a different agent involved back then - i am reasonably happy the reason why we are now acting is genuine so i am not thinking anything is suspect its not my remit though to dig into the old sorted stuff - there is also the possibility that historical itemsmight have slightly different terms from current items - i know they have differnt course types too so its not inconceivable that the current stuff they are looking at is not the same as the old stuff.
I have contacted our vat specialists but the answer i have had from them is somewhat vague - i think i need to go back to them to get something more authoritative answers if i am being more honest - they did seem to indicate the wording of the legislation was slightly different from that of the procedural manual - i am awaiting from them copy of the current legislation from them all i easily have available is the following which mentioned amendments.
Part of the issue here is that i don't fully understand the implications of the full general ethos of 701/30 so i am minded to worry that i may be making a fundamnetal error by missing something relevant.
My main practical worry is that it is known that the associated training that is part of the supply being split is being billed as standard rated - so i am preusming its a given that the training itself is standard rated (i will separately double check that)- therefore anything that follows the vat treatment of the associated training is likely to be defaulting to standard rated - so i don't have thta as a get out clause here?
are your initial impressions that the vat treatment of exams would likely follow vat treatment of associated training UNLESS there is specific reason not to as outlined in item 3b
Ref 3b - the wording here is slightly more promising that either notice 701/30 or the linked procedural manual as it specifically states the following UNLESS the text below is out of date which i would have thought is slightly unliely?
(ii)provided otherwise than in the course or furtherance of a business.
So taking this sentence at face value as long as the customer is not an existing business customer it sounds like the services are exempt.
If this is the case then unles si am missing something then the guide guide and the procedural manuals both seem to be slightly or highly misleading as this exact text seems to be absent.
I could do without this hassle in january as the difference between exempt and standard rated treatment here will untimately decide whetehr this clients needs to be vat registered as they are on the registration bubble looking at their next 12 month oder book