Save the Time for Sales Tax: The Best Option


As a Sales tax taxable person (self-employed or company), you have to pay the Sales tax that you have collected from your customers each month or quarter and can deduct the Sales tax that you yourself have paid. It is therefore important to know when the Sales tax becomes chargeable. Is it when you receive a deposit, when you issue an invoice or when the customer pays? We will look at this issue from a supplier / service provider perspective.

Payment, invoice, chargeable event

Between 2013 and 2015, the Sales tax liability was mainly attached to the time of the occurrence of the event giving rise to the tax, that is to say in principle at the time of the delivery of the good or the provision of services (we do not speak for the moment of cases of intra-community deliveries and acquisitions, nor of imports). Use the online sales tax calculator is there.

Since January 1, 2016, the payability depends either on the invoice or on the payment. The date of the chargeable event is still decisive only for the date on which the invoice must in principle be established. This is why it is important to mention on the invoice the date of the delivery of the goods or the performance of the services (if it is different from the date of the invoice).

National delivery of goods

In the case of domestic delivery of goods, the quality of the customer should be examined. In a B2B situation (the acquirer is a taxable person or a non-taxable legal person), you are in principle required to issue an invoice. The due date will then, in practice, be determined by the issuance of the invoice and the receipt of payment. In other words: Sales tax becomes payable on the date of issue of the mandatory invoice, unless the customer makes an advance payment.

  • If you do not issue or if you issue the mandatory invoice late, the tax becomes payable on the 15th day of the month following that in which the chargeable event occurred. This date coincides in fact with the date on which the deadline for issuing the invoice expires.
  • If the customer pays before delivery, the date on which you receive payment is decisive for the Sales tax liability. In the case of payment in cash, the date of receipt of payment corresponds to the date of delivery of cash, but in the case of payment with meal vouchers for example, this is the date on which you receive your money as that trader.

In the event of a B2C situation with mandatory invoicing, the applicable rules are the same as in a B2B situation. In the case of voluntary invoicing, Sales tax becomes payable at the time of payment, even if you issue an invoice for sums not yet paid (this is the collection system). The voluntary establishment of an invoice does not in itself constitute a cause of Sales tax liability. However, the administration accepts that for pragmatic reasons, you still take into account the date of issue of the invoice to determine when you must include Sales tax in your declaration.



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