Declaration and payment in the EU-OSS
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The declaration is submitted electronically via FinanzOnline (→ BMF). Declarations can also be uploaded in XML format. Declaration XMLs are uploaded directly in the EU-OSS or the non-EU-OSS (eVAT) under the menu item ‘Erklärung einreichen’ [Submit declaration] using the ‘Erklärung hochladen’ function (not a FinanzOnline web service).
The declaration period is the quarter (calendar quarter):
- First quarter: January - March
- Second quarter: April - June
- Third quarter: July - September
- Fourth quarter: October - December
All sales coming under the specific arrangement exported between 1 January 2022 and 31 March 2022 must be included in the declaration period for the first quarter 2023.
How is the tax due paid?
Tax payments for sales declared through the EU-OSS are made via an account set up by the Treasury for the purpose of the EU-OSS. Payment is made quoting the underlying tax declaration.
When does the declaration need to be submitted in the EU-OSS and when does the VAT need to be paid?
Sales that fall under the EU-OSS must be included in the quarter in which the delivery or service was performed. This applies even if the business is subject to cash accounting in accordance with Section 17 of the Umsatzsteuergesetz (UStG) or if prepayment has been made. The business has one month after the end of the quarter to submit the declaration and pay the tax.
On 30 December 2022, an Italian consumer orders goods from an Austrian mail order company. The goods are paid for on 31 December 2022. On 5 January 2023, the mail order company ships the goods.
The key date is the sale completion date on 5 January 2023. The sale must therefore be included in the declaration for the first quarter of 2023. The mail order company has until the end of April to submit the declaration. Payment of the VAT due must also be made by no later than the end of April.
For platforms designated to act as virtual tax payers in accordance with Section 3, Para. 3a of the Umsatzsteuergesetz, an exception from this mandatory taxation on an invoice basis applies. Sales for which the platform is designated as a virtual taxpayer must be included in the declaration period in which the payment was received (similarly, see the information regarding time of acceptance of payment in the IOSS).
Can a business already registered for the EU-OSS choose whether it declares sales via the EU-OSS or in the conventional way?
No. For information, see the question ‘Can the EU-OSS also be used only for services?’
Do declarations also need to be submitted for quarters in which the business does not make any sales?
Yes. If the business decides to use the EU-OSS, declarations must be submitted even if no services covered by the EU-OSS are provided in a quarter (zero reporting). If a business repeatedly omits to do this, they may be excluded and locked out.
What information must be provided in the EU-OSS declaration?
The Member State in which the tax is payable (consumption member state), the measurement basis for taxes (net sales in euros) and the applicable tax rate must be provided in the declaration. If services are not performed from Austria but from premises in another Member State, you must also state the premises together with their VAT ID number. For goods deliveries, the Member State in which the carriage of the goods begins must be stated. This is done by indicating the premises in this Member State and if the business has no premises there, by indicating the country of departure.
What is a country of departure?
At registration and in the business profile, you have the option to add an (EU) premises or an (EU) country of departure. If you have premises in another Member State, add the premises in your business profile, giving their foreign VAT ID number. If you have no premises in a Member State and nonetheless ship goods from there, add this Member State as a country of departure. Selection as a country of departure is required if, for example, a business has goods held in a foreign warehouse and the goods are sent from there.
An Austrian mail order business (V) sells a product via an online platform to a non-business consumer in Belgium. The goods are held in a warehouse for the platform in Germany. From there, the goods are delivered directly to the non-business consumer in Belgium. V has no premises in Germany and is not registered for VAT there.
If V is registered for the EU-OSS, they must declare intra-EU mail order sales via this service. V can add Germany as a ‘country of departure’ in their business profile. In the declaration, V must select ‘Germany’ as the country of departure in the field labelled ‘Warenlieferungen aus anderen EU-Abgangsländern’ [Goods deliveries from other EU countries of departure]. Belgium must be selected as the ‘Mitgliedstaat des Verbrauchs’ [consumption member state].
V has premises in Germany. In this case, V must add the German premises in their business profile, including the German VAT ID number. In the declaration, V must select the VAT ID number of the German premises as the country of departure in the field labelled ‘Warenlieferungen aus anderen EU-Abgangsländern’ [Goods deliveries from other EU countries of departure]. Belgium must be selected as the ‘Mitgliedstaat des Verbrauchs’ [consumption member state].
The tax rate of the Member State in which the sale is taxable applies. The European Commission provides information about the tax rates applicable in other Member States in its ‘Taxes in Europe database (→ EC)’. The tax rates entered in this database are available as a non-binding selection in the EU-OSS. Note that only the authorities in the applicable Member State can provide binding information regarding the actual tax rates that apply.
In addition to the choice of tax rates offered, there is an option to enter a tax rate manually. This may be necessary, for example, if the tax rates change in a Member State but no technical maintenance has been performed yet.
The sums reported in the tax declaration must be in euros. To calculate the tax, the business must convert foreign currency sums according to the rates set by the European Central Bank for the last day of the declaration period. If no conversion rates have been set for that day, the business must convert the tax according to the conversion rates set by the European Central Bank for the next day after the end of the declaration period.
A customer has returned a good or receives an after-purchase rebate. How can a correction be made to the EU-OSS declaration?
Corrections to declarations already sent to the EU-OSS can be made up to a maximum of 3 years from the day in which the original declaration had to be submitted. The correction is made by adding the information to the current EU-OSS declaration in the field ‘Korrektur früherer Zeiträume’ [correction of other periods].
A mail order business delivers goods to a customer in Germany on 15 March 2024. In May, the customer is awarded a rebate for this delivery.
If the mail order business is in the EU-OSS, it must include the intra-EU mail order sale in the declaration for the first quarter of 2024. The correction of this declaration is entered in the declaration for the second quarter (the rebate is awarded in May). There is a dedicated ‘Korrektur’ [Correction] field available in the declaration for this purpose.
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