with No Comments

Refund of foreign VAT - Failure to comply with the one-month deadline for replying to a request for additional information

A German company submitted a request for a refund of the French VAT via the electronic portal of the German VAT Authorities. The French authorities then sent a request for additional information to which the company was legally obliged to reply within the one-month deadline. As no reply was received, the tax authorities rejected the company's refund request. The question is whether or not the legal period of one month is a rule of foreclosure whose non-compliance results in forfeiture of the right to a VAT refund. For the Court of Justice, this is not a time limit for foreclosure. The company still has the possibility to regularise its claim for reimbursement by producing directly before the national court additional information to establish the existence of its right to a VAT refund (02/05/2019, C/133-18, Sea Chefs Cruise Services GmbH).

We encourage European companies that have faced a rejection of their foreign VAT refund application on this basis (in France or elsewhere in Europe) to lodge an appeal in order to challenge the decision to refuse a refund.

Reduced VAT rate applicable to additional goods and services

Greece has amended its VAT Law and extended the application of the reduced VAT rate (13%) to additional goods, including oils, cocoa, sugar, salt, vinegar and miscellaneous edible preparations. The reduced rate now also applies to catering services in restaurants (alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages excluded). The amendment came into force on 20 May 2019.