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Right to deduction - Incorrect description of the goods on the invoices

The tax authorities may not refuse a taxpayer the right to deduct input VAT on the sole ground that the purchase invoices contain an error relating to the identification of the goods which are covered by the transactions. Penalizing the taxpayer's failure to comply with formal conditions by refusing the right of deduction goes beyond what is necessary to achieve the objective of ensuring the correct application of the VAT neutrality principle. The authorities must also take into account the additional information and documents provided by that taxable person in order to assess whether the substantive conditions for the VAT deduction are met.

Furthermore, it is not necessary for the taxable person to issue an amending document to correct the mistake, nor to request corrective invoices from his supplier as long as he provides the tax authorities with the explanations and documents necessary to determine the actual purpose of the transactions (13/12/2018, C-491/18).


Share disposal transaction, envisaged but not carried out

A share disposal transaction for which the direct and exclusive reason does not lie in the taxable economic activity of the company concerned, or which does not constitute the direct, permanent and necessary extension of that economic activity, does not come within the scope of VAT. It follows that the VAT relating to the disputed services is not deductible.

According to the Court, this is valid even if the intended sale was not completed. In that context, the important point is the fact that, had that sale been completed, the expenditure incurred in relation to the disputed services would not, in any event, have come within the scope of VAT and, therefore, could not have given rise to a right to deduct (08/11/2018, C-502/17).