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Spain drops plans on real-time VAT ledgers

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Spain drops plans on real-time VAT ledgers

Back in 2015, the Spanish government announced plans to introduce real time reporting obligations for large taxpayers. The new obligation would require the submission of VAT ledgers of issued and received invoices within 4 days from the date of issuance or the date it was booked in the ledgers. The information required included some unique data such as description of goods and services, separate code for simplified invoices and, where a credit note is issued, individual reference to the cancelled invoice.  The planned implementation date was 1 January 2017.

Following recent political developments, this project will not enter into force in January 2017. The government has not announced any plans of implementing it in the coming future and we may therefore expect the plans to be temporarily dropped. However, real-time ledger reporting may be in the list again somewhere in 2017, when the new government has finalized the announced priorities. In that case, based on the plans originally published, there would be a delayed implementation date to give businesses time to adapt to this new requirement.

This model is widely known in Brazil, where it has been in place for some years. Although certain EU countries require the SAF-T to be submitted periodically, Spain would have been the first country asking for this data in real time. According to the original plan, the new obligation would apply to companies submitting monthly VAT returns. This includes non-established taxable persons only registered in Spain for VAT purposes.

Our Spanish VAT manual provides a comprehensive list of the applicable VAT rules in Spain, particularly those affecting foreign businesses. Please contact us if you need help with your Spanish VAT obligations.


  • By Marosa EU VAT
  • Published 30/11/2016 19:05