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VAT Frequently Asked Questions

What is "VAT"?

VAT (Value Added Tax) is a form of consumption tax. All 28 European Union member states apply VAT. It has different names in different countries e.g. in Spain it is IVA, in France – TVA, in Germany – MwSt. etc. Each country applies its own rate of VAT. VAT is a key source of revenue for any government.

How is VAT collected?

The seller charges the customer VAT and then pays this VAT to the government.

Why should I register for VAT?

You may be legally required to do so. If you do not comply, the tax authority can fine you and in some cases stop your goods from getting to your customers.

How long will it take for me to get a VAT registration number?

Once we have all the paperwork it can take up to 6 weeks to receive a VAT registration number.

How much will it cost?

Prices are depending on the kind of business and the scope of your business activities in Germany. Please send an email to us on info@vat-germany.com

What happens once I register?

Once VAT registered, there are periodic VAT data requirements (VAT Returns and Intrastat) which are necessary to fulfil the tax authority criteria. We help you by collating the necessary data and submitting it on your behalf in German language to the tax office.

What happens if I don’t send the information you need to compile the VAT returns to you on time?

If we don’t receive the necessary data in time, the tax authority can issue penalties or fines that you will have to pay in addition to any VAT you owe.

How often will I have to submit a VAT return?

For the first two years you are obligated to submit monthly VAT advance returns and an annual VAT return. From the beginning of the third year, it depends on the level of sales/services.

De-registration – what if I don’t want to be registered for VAT any longer?

We can help you establish if you are eligible to deregister. If you sell goods over the VAT threshold, you will have to continue to be registered and file periodic VAT returns. If, however, you are eligible, we will deregister you.

What do you mean by "statistical returns"?

A Statistical return is an "Intrastat filing". This document is the method used by European governments to collect information and produce statistics on the movement of goods between member states in the European Union (EU). These have different thresholds for VAT.