Roger Thomas QC

Roger’s advisory practice covers a wide area of both direct and indirect tax issues.  Roger has a particular reputation for his technical appreciation and understanding of complex tax matters and his ability to present them in a succinct and palatable form to both court and client.  His practice is evenly balanced between litigation and advisory work.  His recent practice has included:

  • Advising on UK tax aspects of a US Oil company reorganisation
  • Advising on the UK corporate tax aspects of the rescue of a leading bank following the sub-prime mortgage debacle
  • Acting for the taxpayer in the first SDLT avoidance case DV3 v HMRC 
  • Acting for the taxpayer in the first case on the SDLT anti-avoidance provision, section 75A Finance Act 2003: Project Blue v HMRC
  • Acting for a number of charities in a string of successful cases establishing the boundary of the concept of ‘business’ for vat purposes: Woking Museum v HMRC, Yarburgh v HMRC, St Paul’s v HMRC and Longridge on the Thames v HMRC
  • Advising on Singapore stamp duty for a major oil company
  • Appearing in the Commercial Court for a Russian Oil company in a dispute with an Italian company as to the liability for Italian VAT on deliveries of oil into storage
  • Appearing for the taxpayer in the European Court of Justice in a case on whether the VAT exemption for medical services was available to an institution storing stem cells derived from umbilical cord blood
  • Acting for HMRC in the European Court of Justice in a case on the liability to stamp duty reserve tax of transfers of shares into a European Clearance Service

Career

Called 1979, Lincoln’s Inn

Recent cases

Yarburgh Children's Trust v CCE (High Court); Kerr v Brown Boyd v Brown (Special Commissioners); Public & Commercial Services Union v CCE (High Court); St Paul's Community Development Trust v CCE (High Court); PJG Developments Limited v CCE (VAT Tribunal); Messenger Leisure Developments Limited v CCE (Court of Appeal); Marshall Motor Group v HMRC (VAT Tribunal); St Helen's School v HMRC (High Court); Telent plc v HMRC (VAT Tribunal); Northampton Theatres Trust v HMRC (VAT Tribunal); HSBC v HMRC (ECJ); Atrium Club Ltd v HMRC (VAT Tribunal).

Publications

VAT (Halsbury’s Laws of England)

Customs & Excise Duties (Halsbury’s Laws of England)

Customs Duty (De Voil Vol 6)

Hill and Redmans on Landlord and Tenant Law (SDLT) Editor

Memberships

VAT Practitioners Group

Stamp Tax Practitioners Group

Revenue Bar Association

London Common Law & Commercial Bar Association

Education

Portsmouth Grammar School

St John’s College, Oxford University (BA Jurisprudence, 1st; BCL, 1st)

The Chambers Guide says...

Tax: Corporate Tax
Ranking: New Silk (2015)

Possesses great experience of representing clients in significant corporate tax cases before the highest courts, both in the UK and in Europe. He is an authority on stamp duty land tax (SDLT) and stamp duty reserve tax. "My impression is that he is very responsive. His advice is crisp and pragmatic, and based on a very deep knowledge of tax law." (2015)

Enjoys a healthy reputation in dispute work thanks to the fact that he's an active presence in the ECJ and Supreme Court. "He is very good technically and represents very good value." (2014)

Roger Thomas has over 30 years of experience at the Bar. His corporate tax practice is highly regarded, and he is frequently instructed by top multinational companies and major accountancy firms. He has recently been representing the taxpayer in a case examining sub-sale relief in stamp duty land tax (2013)

Tax: Indirect Tax
Ranking: New Silk (2015)

An SDLT expert of some repute, who continues to act for clients involved in VAT cases, including arts and culture organisations. He has significant experience of appearing before the ECJ and the Supreme Court."He is the man to go to for cultural exemptions and the like." (2015)

Has extensive expertise in stamp duty land tax (SDLT) issues as well as VAT, and has handled cases before both the ECJ and Supreme Court. He has advised a number of arts organisations on their indirect taxation issues. "Roger has very good technical skills and is always very thoroughly prepared." (2014)

With over 30 years' experience at the Bar, Roger Thomas is a man with an enviable knowledge of the law relating to indirect tax. He typically advises organisations on stamp duty land tax (SDLT) and VAT matters, and recently acted in Harrison v HMRC, securing a win for his taxpayer client (2013)

The Legal 500 says...

Tax: Corporate and VAT
Rankings: VAT- New Silks, 1st tier

'His sharp mind and keen interest mwan that a commercial solution is always in sight' (2014)

Roger Thomas is 'first port of call for real estate matters' (2013)

Roger Thomas appeared in DV3-SDLT, concerning the sub sale relief in SDLT (2012)

Private Client: Personal Tax
Rankings: New Silks, 1st tier (2014)

'Extremely bright, with a thorough knowledge of the law' (2014)

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Roger Thomas  QC

Called 1979
QC 2014
Clerks 020 7414 8080
clerks@pumptax.com