From 5 October 2015 do not be surprised if when you are buying your goods from supermarkets and retailers they charge you for carrying your goods in a carrier bag.
The government as part of their policy to reduce waste have introduced charges for single use carrier bags on all large retailers.
This applies to retailers who have 250 or more employees. They are required to charge a minimum of 5p to their customers for single use plastic carrier bags.
If you order goods online and these are delivered in single use carrier bags you will also be charged for these.
This will have VAT and corporation tax implications. If the supplier is liabile to charge VAT, the amount they charge for a bag is tax inclusive at the standard rate of VAT. For a VAT registered business charging 5 pence, the taxable amount will be 4.17 pence and the VAT 0.83 pence.
Once retailers have deducted reasonalbe costs relating to complying with the legislation it is expected that they will donate all proceeds to good causes.
Failure for retailers to comply with the new policy could lead to fines of up to £5,000, in addition to any other penalties. https://www.gov.uk/guidance/carrier-bag-charges-retailers-responsibilities
How to avoid this charge is to take your own bags with you when you do your shopping. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/single-use-plastic-carrier-bags-why-were-introducing-the-charge/single-use-plastic-carrier-bags-why-were-introducing-the-charge
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