Reminder: VAT on Local Authority Fees

Posted: 31 March 2017

HMRC advised that all Local Authorities should apply VAT, at 20%, to Local Authority CON29 fees by 31 Mar 2017. In light of this price hike, now maybe the ideal time to consider STL’s Regulated Local Authority Search.

This highly popular search saves you time when reviewing the results. It is also supported by our ‘Lenders Guarantee’; in the rare instance that your lender does not accept our Regulated Search we will replace it with a council search.

Our Regulated search offers many benefits when compared to the Council search:

What Local Authorities will be applying VAT/increasing prices?
As advised by HMRC all Local Authorities should be applying VAT to CON29 fees by 31 Mar 17.

Why is VAT being added?
HMRC views that Local Authorities produce CON29 data commercially. As with all other commercial activities VAT must therefore be added.

What about VAT on the LLC1?
HMRC has not indicated it will ask for VAT to be added on the LLC1.

Is VAT being applied to all of the disbursement?
Yes, you will pay VAT where a Local Authority has included VAT on the invoice.

How will STL apply the VAT changes?
STL will continue to treat these as a disbursement.

How will we know what total price our customers will need to pay?
You will see the most up to date price when you order the search on STL Online.

What difference will we see on the invoices?
As Local Authorities have added VAT, you will see a price increase on your Council searches.

How does this affect the STL Regulated Local Authority Search price?
This VAT change will not affect STL’s Regulated Local Authority Searches.  Our Regulated search is a fixed nationwide price regardless of Local Authority, and in light of the VAT changes, it is now more cost effective than the majority of Council searches.

So…time to reconsider a Regulated Search instead of a Council Search? If so then contact your Account Manager, telephone 0800 318 611 or email

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