The Expert's eye
In this case, the Dutch company narrowly avoided the double taxation sought by the Polish administration, but it is not out of the woods yet. It will only be able to reclaim Polish VAT if it corrects the entire model and proves that it has declared the intra-Community acquisition either in the country of arrival of the goods (which is unlikely given that these acquisitions have already been declared by its customers) or in another European country (by applying the simplified triangular regime).
There are several interesting elements to be reminded from this judgment:
- The attribution of transport remains the key issue in supply chain sales. The European regulation introduced in 2020 in all European countries (quick fixes), which was intended to reduce the risk of conflict on this issue, only partially resolves the issue.
- The Dutch company, rather than acting under its Polish VAT number and receiving an invoice with Polish VAT in order to avoid trouble with the Polish tax authorities, should have mastered the VAT mechanics of supply chain sales.
- Rigorous analysis of the VAT treatment of chain transactions is a better guarantee against VAT risks. Goodwill is not enough, especially in the face of tax authorities desperate for tax revenue.