The VAT is a young law, yet it is one of the tax laws that has undergone the most movement in the last twenty years. VAT underwent a major overhaul in 2009, 10 years after its implementation. If the main principles have not really been modified, the same cannot be said for the publications of the Federal Tax Administration.
These publications, which are frequently supplemented or revised, contain almost 3000 pages of comments on the application of the VAT. For non-specialists, the VAT is a real labyrinth! Also, most of the notices have been recently modified and frequent changes in practice are published every year, now only on the web.
VAT is a self-assessment tax, which means that it is up to the taxpayer to estimate the amount of VAT he/she owes or intends to collect. If the taxpayer makes a mistake in his calculations, he will be entirely responsible in case of an audit. The Federal Administration will not hesitate to recover the uncollected amounts and will charge interest for late payment, as well as possible fines.
As the statute of limitations for VAT is 5 years, errors or a simple misinterpretation of the VAT rules can have dramatic financial consequences. Over the years, the Federal Tax Administration also allows itself to deviate from the law through its constantly changing publications. As a result, VAT is becoming more and more complex every year and is becoming a specialist field dedicated to this tax.
Managing your VAT risk means ensuring that your company is not exposing itself to future VAT recoveries due to a misunderstanding of the law or its publications. Managing your VAT risk also means managing your accounting, business operations and all the administrative documents necessary to demonstrate the correct VAT treatment of your operations.
Our specialists have a long experience of VAT and will be able to guide you on the treatment of this tax. We also offer regular VAT “check-up” or “sanity check”. These checks take the form of short VAT audits, during which we focus on the corrections to be made in order to avoid unpleasant surprises in the event of an audit by the Administration.