Illegible data on the intra-Community supplies invoice and the right to apply the 0% rate

Service-Tax

Currently, many companies offer their goods not only on the domestic market, but also on the EU markets. The procedure of intra-Community delivery of goods is more and more widely known, as well as the conditions for applying the 0% VAT rate or documentation obligations. Nevertheless, at a time of increased influence of orders, contractors make various errors in the sales documentation. What should the seller do if there are illegible data on the intra-Community supplies invoice? What about the possibility of applying the 0% VAT rate?

Conditions for applying the 0% rate for intra-Community supply

Pursuant to Art. 42 sec. 1 of the VAT Act, the intra-Community supply of goods is subject to taxation at the 0% tax rate, provided that:

  1. the taxpayer made a supply to a buyer who has a proper and valid identification number for intra-Community transactions, assigned by the Member State of the buyer, containing the two-letter code used for value added tax,

  2. the taxpayer, before the deadline for submitting a tax return for a given tax period, has evidence in his documentation that the goods being the subject of the intra-Community supply have been exported from the territory of the country and delivered to the buyer within the territory of a Member State other than the territory of the country,

  3. the taxpayer, when submitting a tax return showing this supply of goods, is registered as an EU VAT payer.

Documentation obligations confirming the completion of WDT

On the other hand, pursuant to Art. 42 sec. 3 of the VAT Act, the evidence proving the implementation of intra-Community supply of goods are the following documents, if they jointly confirm the delivery of goods being the subject of intra-Community supply to the buyer located in the territory of a Member State other than the territory of the country:

  1. transport documents received from the carrier (forwarder) responsible for the export of goods from the territory of the country, which clearly show that the goods have been delivered to their destination in the territory of a Member State other than the territory of the country - in the event that the transport of goods is commissioned to the carrier (forwarder),

  2. specification of individual items of cargo.

The above catalog is not exhaustive, and the legislator also makes it possible to present other evidence, if the above-mentioned the documents do not clearly confirm the delivery of the goods to the EU recipient:

  1. business correspondence with the buyer, including his order,

  2. documents regarding insurance or freight costs,

  3. a document confirming payment for the goods, except for cases where the delivery is free of charge or the obligation is performed in a different form, in which case another - a document confirming the expiry of the obligation,

  4. proof of acceptance by the buyer of the goods in the territory of a Member State other than the territory of the country.

Documentary examples confirming the completion of WDT

For the documentary confirmation of the performance of the WDT and the possibility of applying the 0% rate for the transaction in question, the taxpayer may also collect other evidence confirming the actual completion of the WDT, including:

  1. written declarations of the buyer confirming delivery of the goods to the places indicated by the buyer, which are other EU countries than Poland, or

  2. written statements of the buyer about the delivery of the goods to the final recipient purchasing the goods from the buyer, which is located in a European Union country other than the country of the seller's seat and the country of the buyer's seat, or

  3. a model document introduced by the seller, which would contain: the name of the supplier, the name of the buyer, place of issue of the goods, place of destination of the goods, type, quantity and CN code of the goods, car registration number, name of the carrier and the signature of the recipient of the goods.

  4. a VAT invoice containing a detailed description of the range to be exported,

  5. printout from the bank account confirming payment for the goods,

  6. business correspondence with the buyer, including his order.

The most important issue in the collected documentation is that it should unequivocally confirm that the goods specified in it have actually been exported outside Poland and delivered to the EU recipient's country. Also the Supreme Administrative Court in the resolution of October 11, 2010, with reference number IFPS 1/10 indicated that the types of documents listed in the Act are not only binding, but relatively binding. However, in the case of their absence or lack of the required, correct data on them or the presence of incomplete data, the taxpayer may use other evidence documenting the export and delivery of the goods to the country of the EU contractor.

Illegible data on the WDT invoice and the right to apply the 0% VAT rate

A Polish taxpayer selling goods to EU contractors sometimes encounters deficiencies in the documents collected to confirm the intra-Community supply of goods, e.g. a CMR document containing an incorrect date of receipt of the goods or an illegible stamp or signature. In addition to defectiveness, there are also situations where even the CMR consignment note cannot be enforced or the document has been lost, not to mention the possibility of obtaining corrections to existing documents. Defects of minor importance in relation to the documents confirming the export and delivery of goods to the country of the EU contractor do not deprive the taxpayer of the 0% VAT rate, as long as they confirm the actual transaction.

CMR documents containing an incorrect date of receipt of the goods or an illegible stamp or signature may constitute the basis for the application of a 0% VAT rate for intra-Community supply of goods. These errors can be corrected in the content of the CMR document by crossing out the incorrect entry, and then introducing the correct wording with a stamp, date and signature of the person introducing the modification at the place of the change.

The above position is confirmed by the individual interpretation of the Director of the Tax Chamber in Katowice of November 15, 2013, ref. No. IBPP4 / 443-399 / 13 / LG.