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"We have found taxback.com to be a very beneficial service partner in VAT compliance services. They provide a very professional and flexible service which has enabled us to tailor the service received to our specific requirements. They have proved themselves to be very knowledgeable and helpful and the training provided has helped enhance our in house expertise."

"Taxback.com has been very responsive in working together to develop a worldwide vat recovery service for us.  We have been very impressed with their drive, understanding and timeliness in getting the right detail."

"We found working with taxback.com was a very positive experience for us as well as an enhancement to our VAT recovery process."

"We found taxback.com to be a very beneficial partner to work with in respect of VAT reclamation and also in the area of VAT compliance."

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FAQs

VAT reclamation is a complicated and time intensive process that requires expertise in country-specific legislation and relationships with local tax authorities.  Our Frequently Asked Questions section is designed to give you a high-level overview of VAT and how the recovery process works. If you have any additional questions not answered below please click here to communicate with a VAT professional LIVE via instant messenger (no software needed) or email

What is VAT?

Value Added Tax (VAT) is an indirect tax levied on the supply of goods and services that can add between 5 - 27% to your organisation’s foreign business expenses.  It is levied at every stage in the business cycle, itemised on the invoice and paid to the government in each state with the cost ultimately borne by the end consumer.  VAT was established to encourage cross-border trade from one county to another and was designed to be neutral to business if they go through the effort to recover their foreign VAT.

Applicable VAT rates vary from country to country and the tax is recognised under different names, including IVA (Italy), GST (Canada, Australia), MWST (Germany, Austria), TVA (France, Belgium) and MOMS (Scandinavia).

Why can businesses reclaim VAT?

In order to encourage international trade, the European Union introduced legislation in the 1980s enabling businesses to claim back VAT paid on expenses incurred while doing business in member states. VAT is refunded within the EU under the under the EU VAT refund directive, which enables EU companies to reclaim from any member state, and the 13th Directive, which allows businesses established outside the 27-member block to claim. A number of key non-EU territories, including the Australia, US, Japan, Canada and South Korea, also refund VAT/consumption taxes to the non-resident traders via specific refund procedures.

How much VAT can I reclaim?

Generally businesses can reclaim 100% of VAT paid on eligible expenses, subject to fulfilling nominal criteria. The applicable VAT rate varies from country to country, as does the list of eligible business expenditure.  In some cases however only a partial recovery of the VAT amount paid is allowed. These partial recovery expenses are usually related to passenger cars, accommodation, meals and business entertainment. For example, Belgium refunds 50% of VAT paid on the expenses related to passenger cars, while in Denmark businesses can only claim back 25% of the VAT they have been charged on accommodation and meals.

What are the Criteria to Reclaim?

Every country has specific rules on what qualifies for VAT reclamation. Although the criteria varies from country to country, Taxback.com's tax experts have identified common conditions that many countries require for organisations to qualify for foreign VAT refunds. Visit our Criteria to Reclaim section for detailed information.

What information needs to be on the invoices?

All invoices submitted to support your VAT refund claim must be original and need to include the following information:

  • Date of issue;
  • Invoice number;
  • Supplier’s VAT number;
  • Supplier’s full name and address;
  • Customer’s full name and address;
  • Unit price and description of the goods supplied or services rendered;
  • The date of the supply and payment (if different from the date of supply),
  • VAT rate applied,
  • VAT amount payable.

What documents do I need?

Taxback.com can manage your organisation’s reclaim process when you supply the following documents to us:

  • Copies of the invoices to support your VAT claim,
  • Power of Attorney authorisingTaxback.comto arrange a VAT refund with foreign tax authorities on your behalf,

 

* If your company is based outside the EU you supply in addition:

  • Certificate of Taxable Status proving that your organisation is registered taxpayer in your home country
  • The originals of the invoices. These will be returned to you after processing your refund claim.

Will you return my original receipts?

Yes, where original receipts are required, we will return your original invoices after we process your VAT claim.

What countries offer VAT refunds?

A total of 41 countries currently provide VAT refunds, among them all 27 EU member states. The list includes: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Canary Islands, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Holland, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Malta, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom. 

What type of expenses can I claim?

Taxback.com can secure foreign VAT refunds from 41 countries on a range of Travel and Entertainment (T&E) expenses including:

  • Trade fair and conference costs;
  • Meals, accommodation and business entertainment
  • Travel and transport costs
  • Advertising and promotional costs;
  • Professional services;
  • And many additional expenses.

How long does it take to receive a refund?

 Under the relevant legislation your organisation’s VAT must be refunded within 4 months of submitting the application. Actual processing time can however vary from country to country. Taxback.com's Clean Claims Policy means we only submit claims that have been verified for accuracy saving tax official’s time and ensuring continued strong relationships with foreign tax offices, resulting in faster refunds for your organisation. 

Depending on where your costs have been incurred, you could receive your VAT refund in as little as four weeks.

Is there a deadline for submitting claims?

Yes. In most countries your business must reclaim VAT by Sept 30 of the year after the VAT costs were incurred. Click here for an overview of refund timelines.

How often can my company reclaim VAT?

The frequency with which your organisation can submit a VAT rebate claim will vary according to individual countries and tax authorities. Typically, for each country where VAT was charged and is refundable, businesses are entitled to file up to four VAT refund applications per year.

How much does the taxback.com service cost?

The taxback.com VAT Recovery Solutions are designed to fit the unique needs of companies of all sizes, offering market-leading pricing options tailored to your needs. A customised price quote will be provided based on the specific needs of your organisation.

How is the refund paid to my business?

In most countries we can provide your refund in your local currency either by cheque or bank transfer

If my business is based in an EU country, can I claim a VAT refund from another EU country?

Yes. EU companies can get VAT back too. Your business can claim a VAT refund from any EU country as long as your business is not registered in that country.

Is there a minimum claim threshold?

Taxback.com does not operate a minimum claim threshold – however many countries do. In most EU countries the minimum requirement for an annual claim is €50 and for a quarterly claim it is €400.  There is no maximum amount which can be claimed.

What are the advantages of using taxback.com?

More than 12,000 clients from 120 countries choose taxback.com because of its unique and innovative approach to VAT reclaim. Visit our the Taxback.com Advantage section to find out why we're world leaders in VAT refunds.

When is my business required to be registered in another country?

 You business is eligible or liable to VAT register in an EU country if you are carrying out taxable supplies in that country, and the obligation to account for VAT is not shifted to your customer.  The obligation to register for VAT depends on a number of factors, such as type of service performed, destination of the goods, status of your customer, etc.

Can I get VAT back in case by business is registered or required to be registered in the country where the expenses are incurred?

Yes. You can still get VAT back by reporting the VAT on purchases in your VAT return in that country. This may result in either overpayment that could be claimed, or in a VAT credit that can be offset against VAT liabilities.

What are my benefits from the VAT registration?

VAT registration is a lawful obligation that is imposed on businesses carrying out taxable supplies in a particular jurisdiction, subject to conditions. When your business chooses taxback.com to assist you with the registration and subsequent filing and reporting obligations you are comfortable that your business is VAT compliant in that jurisdiction. Businesses that are eligible or liable to VAT register in a country are not entitled to apply for a direct VAT refund from that country. However, once your business has become VAT compliant by registering for VAT, it is also entitled to claim back VAT on purchases which it would otherwise not be able to get back.

What are the consequences of the VAT registration?

Companies have a number of obligations in the jurisdiction they are VAT registered in, such as issuing compliant VAT invoices, keeping proper records, filing VAT returns and other tax declarations on time. Engaging taxback.com to assist you and perform these activities for you will ensure that your business is VAT compliant.

Can taxback.com help my business if I am already registered for VAT?

International VAT can be complex, time-consuming and challenging. [Company_name]’s international team of tax specialists will ensure that your VAT is managed in the most effective, cost-efficient and law compliant way.

  • We can maximise your VAT refund by reviewing your domestic T&E expenses retrospectively for a number of years (Domestic VAT recovery);
  • We can ensure that your current in-house VAT system covers all necessary aspects by carrying out a VAT compliance review, VAT expense review or Expense code review;
  • We can train your staff on various VAT related topics;
  • We are your reliable ad-hoc VAT consultant.