Quick Fixes – Proof of intra-EU transport
Your company performs EXW intra-EU supplies in Italy and you have doubts about the proofs of transport to be collected in order to make sure that the VAT exemption applies. Unfortunately, it looks quite difficult for you to reach the new conditions set up by the Quick Fixes on 01/01/2020 and the related presumption. You therefore wonder what documents would be necessary to stay on the safe side.
The Italian Authorities recently published a ruling and a circular letter in that matter.
Quick fixes : Two rebuttable presumptions
Two rebuttable presumptions were introduced in the European VAT legislation allowing the sellers to claim the VAT exemption on intra-Community supplies. It is now presumed that the goods have been transported outside the Member State of dispatch when the seller who takes care of the transport is in possession of at least two documents listed in the regulation. If the transport is carried out by the purchaser, the latter must also provide the seller with a written declaration indicating the country of destination of the goods so that the presumption can apply.
Most of the businesses face difficulties in collecting proofs of transport. Complying with the new Quick Fixes rules is (almost) impossible for many of them. There are also some doubts about the position that will be taken by tax inspectors in some Member States in case of an audit.
The Italian Authorities however published a ruling in that matter (Risposta n. 117 dated 23/04/2020) and this gives some insight on the issue. By the way, they also issued a new circular letter on 12/05/2020.
Both documents provide comments about the relationship between the presumption referred to in Article 45a of VAT Regulation EU/282/2011 and the national practice regarding proof of transport in intra-Community supplies. The Italian Authorities explicitly state that the intra-EU transport may be demonstrated by another set of documents if the conditions of the presumptions are not met.
In their ruling, the Italian Authorities even confirm that the following set of documents may be considered as a valid proof of transport outside Italy in case of an EXW supply:
- Valid sales invoice;
- CMR signed by the carrier and the consignee for receipt (complemented with a return receipt in case the consignee’s signature is missing);
- Declaration by the transferee that the goods have arrived in the country of destination;
- Bank documentation proving payment;
- Intra-EU recapitulative statements (Intrastat).