Import of goods under the simplified procedure and the obligation to tax

Service-Tax

In the light of the VAT Act, the import of goods constitutes the import of goods from the territory of a third country into the territory of the European Union. In the simplified procedure, it is facilitated by, inter alia, VAT settlements.

Import of goods under the simplified procedure

Purchase of goods from countries outside the European Union can be done in two ways:

  • in the standard procedure, where the VAT due must be paid within 14 days from the date of issuing the decision regarding customs duty,

  • in the simplified procedure, where VAT is not subject to payment "in advance", and is shown both on the due and charged side in the VAT declaration.

If the goods are to be simplified within the territory of the country, then:

  • the calendar month is the billing period,

  • the taxpayer may settle the amount of tax due on the import of goods in the tax declaration submitted for the period in which the tax obligation for the import of these goods arose,

  • the taxpayer may deduct the input tax on the import of the goods in the month when the tax obligation arises.

The conditions necessary to use the settlement of the import of goods contained in art. 33a of the VAT Act

If the taxpayer intends to use the procedure of importing goods contained in art. 33a of the VAT Act, covered by this procedure in Poland, he is obliged to notify the head of the customs and tax office in writing about the intention to settle the tax on the terms set out in the simplified procedure before the beginning of the settlement period from which he will apply such settlement.

The implementation of the declaration for the simplified procedure depends on the prior issuance of the permit.

In addition to the above-mentioned of the declaration, the taxpayer is obliged to present to the head of the customs office not earlier than 6 months before the import:

  • certificates of no arrears in payments of due social security contributions and in payments of individual taxes constituting the income of the state budget, exceeding separately for each title, including each tax separately, respectively 3% of the amount of contributions due and tax liabilities due in individual taxes,

  • confirmation of registration of the taxpayer as an active VAT payer.

Moreover, the presentation of the above documents by the taxpayer may take the form of statements made by the taxpayer with the same content.

This declaration is submitted under the pain of criminal liability for making false statements. The person submitting the declaration is obliged to include the following clause in it: "I am aware of the criminal liability for submitting a false statement". This clause replaces the instruction of the authority on criminal liability for making false statements.

If the goods are covered by the simplification by an intermediary, the right to settle VAT on importation is granted to the taxpayer to whom the customs declaration is submitted.

The customs declaration is deemed accepted when the goods are entered in the register.

Import of goods - tax obligation

The tax obligation on importation of goods arises when the customs debt is incurred. When considering the category of incurring a customs debt, reference should be made to Regulation 952/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 9 October 2013 establishing the Union Customs Code. Under that regulation, a customs debt on importation arises when non-Union goods subject to import duties are placed under one of the following customs procedures:

  • release for free circulation, including under the provisions on end use,

  • temporary admission with partial relief from import duties.

The customs debt is incurred at the time of acceptance of the customs declaration, while the debtor is the declarant, and in the case of an indirect representation, it is also the person on whose behalf the customs declaration is made.

Customs debt when the necessary conditions are not met

In addition, where the goods are subject to import duties, a customs debt on importation will be incurred if the following conditions are not met:

  • one of the obligations provided for in the customs law provisions regarding the introduction of non-Union goods into the customs territory of the Union, removal from customs supervision, movement, processing, storage, temporary storage, temporary admission of these goods or their disposal in this area,

  • one of the obligations provided for in the customs legislation regarding the end-use of goods within the customs territory of the Union,

  • one of the conditions required to place non-Union goods under a customs procedure or to grant an exemption from customs duty or a reduced rate of import duty by virtue of the end-use of the goods.

On the other hand, the moment when the debt arises in the event of failure to meet the necessary conditions is the moment when:

  • the obligation is not or the obligation is no longer fulfilled, failure to do so gives rise to a customs debt,

  • a customs declaration for the placing of goods under a customs procedure is accepted and it is subsequently established that the condition required for the goods to be placed under that procedure or for a duty exemption or a reduced rate of import duty by virtue of the end-use of the goods has not been actually fulfilled.

Tax base for the import of goods under the simplified procedure

The taxable amount for the importation of goods is the customs value plus the duty payable. Thus, this value is the basis for determining the customs debt and its changes will depend on the amount of the tax base.

On the other hand, if the import of goods concerns excise goods subject to excise duty, then the tax base will be the customs value increased by the duty and excise duty due.

The tax base specified above includes additional costs:

  • commission costs,

  • packaging costs,

  • transport and insurance costs (unless included in the customs value) incurred up to the first destination within the territory of the country, as well as resulting from transport to another destination within the territory of the European Union, if that place is known at the time of importation.

The concept of first destination is understood by the legislator as the place mentioned in the consignment note or any other transport document on the basis of which the goods are imported. In the absence of such information, the first place of transhipment within the territory of the country shall be considered the first place of destination.

It should also be added that fees and other charges are added to the tax base, if the customs authorities are required to collect these charges for the import of goods.

In addition to the above, the taxable amount for the importation of goods does not include the following amounts:

  • constituting a price reduction in the form of a discount for early payment,

  • price discounts and rebates granted to the buyer or recipient, taken into account at the time of sale.