Sean McGinness

Partner, Edinburgh

Sean McGinness

Sean is Head of the Edinburgh office. He is Head of VAT at Saffery and advises corporates, charities and landed estates on their VAT process and controls. He is also the National Tax Partner.

He advises in a range of sectors including property and construction where he provides advice on land transactions both for sellers and buyers. He also advises on commercial, residential and mixed use developments and acts for a number of national housebuilders.

Outside of property development Sean also has clients in the landed estates, not-for-profit, retail, consumer products, and financial services sectors. He also advises widely in the conferencing sector, providing advice to venues and also businesses and charities hosting events in the UK and Europe.

Sean advises corporates, charities and landed estates on their VAT process and controls, including assisting with HMRC enquiries. He has also supported clients with HMRC risk reviews and assisting with the Senior Accounting Officer process. This includes providing best practice guidance to manage risk in VAT processes and support with internal training programmes.

Key experience

  • Leads a team who are the preferred tax advisor to a FTSE 250 housebuilder. This covers VAT transaction and risk and controls advice, SDLT, employment, and corporate tax including providing advice on reliefs such as land remediation and research and development tax credits,
  • Advising several large landed estates across the UK on their VAT issues,
  • Launching the firm’s real estate group in April 2020,
  • Advising a software company on its development of an invoicing solution and acting as the VAT subject matter liaison between his client and their corporate client,
  • Providing peer support to a new head of tax who was developing an in-house tax strategy and controls process.


Outside of work Sean is a keen cricketer and golfer as well as being a keen follower of rugby.