Responsibility of accounting offices for JPK V7 and a penalty for errors!
From October 1, 2020, all active VAT payers submit one JPK V7 file with additional markings and GTU codes. This obligation applies to all companies registered for VAT, regardless of their size. What is the responsibility of accounting offices for JPK V7 in the light of these regulations? We check!
Basic information about JPK V7
The new JPK V7 was introduced under the Regulation of the Minister of Finance, Investment and Development of October 15, 2019 on the detailed scope of data contained in tax declarations and records in the field of tax on goods and services. It replaced the previously submitted separately VAT-7 or VAT-7K declarations with attachments and the JPK_VAT information. The new JPK V7 consists of two parts:
registration - includes information on purchases and sales for a given period,
declaration - is the equivalent of VAT-7 and VAT-7K declarations.
Both parts - registration and declaration - are sent together in one file. All active VAT taxpayers are obliged to submit JPK V7. Therefore, this obligation applies to both large, medium and small companies, as well as micro-enterprises. The solution was to be introduced earlier - from April 1, 2020 for large enterprises and from July 1, 2020 for all taxpayers - however, due to the COVID-19 pandemic and demands submitted by companies, it finally began to function on October 1, 2020.
Importantly, the new JPK V7 files introduced a lot of complexity by adding a number of additional markings to the transaction and GTU codes from 1 to 13 for specific types of sales.
Benefits of introducing JPK V7
According to the Ministry of Finance, the introduction of the new JPK V7 brings a number of benefits:
the accounting office sends one JPK V7 file for the entrepreneur instead of two separate VAT-7 and VAT-7K declarations and additional JPK_VAT information. In this way, it performs two obligations, but without the need to generate two files, place two authorizing signatures, make two shipments and wait twice for the Official Receipt Certificate (UPO);
the accountant does not submit separately duplicate information;
lower reporting burden for VAT payers, which will facilitate subsequent settlements with the tax office;
a smaller number of documents processed in the IT systems of the National Revenue Administration (KAS);
limiting the number of tax audits and proceedings;
shortening the time of performing control activities;
automatic verification of each VAT settlement without the need to involve the taxpayer and at the request of the accounting office.
Responsibility of accounting offices for JPK V7
Although the new regulations were intended to facilitate taxpayers, they also raised doubts among entrepreneurs running accounting offices. One of the basic services they offer is keeping sales records as well as completing and submitting a uniform control file. However, it is provided based on the documentation provided by the clients, i.e. the taxpayers themselves.
Accounting offices were concerned that the sales invoices provided to them would not be marked with the codes of goods and service groups (GTUs) or would be marked incorrectly - especially since the offices cannot always verify the correctness of the marking. These concerns resulted from the possibility of applying the sanctions listed in the Value Added Tax Act. They provide for the possibility of the head of the tax office imposing a fine of PLN 500 for each incorrect entry in the records, which, despite being requested, will not be corrected or explained on time.
Record error - who is responsible?
Pursuant to Art. 109 paragraph. 3h of the Value Added Tax Act, a fine may only be imposed on the taxpayer. On the other hand, the entrepreneur may transfer his responsibility to the company that keeps his accounting under recourse liability. Article 471 of the Civil Code indicates that the debtor is obliged to repair the damage resulting from non-performance or improper performance of an obligation, unless the non-performance or improper performance is a consequence of circumstances for which the debtor is not liable. In this case, the accountancy office's liability may result from its obligation consisting in the provision of services. The provisions of the contract that the accounting office concludes with the client turn out to be of key importance - and above all, the scope of obligations of both parties as well as limitations and exclusions of liability. As the Regulation imposes new obligations on taxpayers, the existing contracts signed by accounting offices may not relate to the indicated problem. A company providing accounting and bookkeeping services may therefore be liable for failure to exercise due diligence, determined taking into account the professional nature of the activity referred to in Art. 472 in connection with joke. 355 §2 of the Civil Code.
Therefore, if a financial penalty is imposed on the entrepreneur, the accounting office will have to show that it has performed the utmost diligence in keeping records and submitting a uniform control file. In such a situation, the offices may benefit from attempts to verify the correctness of invoice markings or to mark them on their own on the basis of their knowledge and experience. However, what is very important, the burden of proof in this case rests with the accounting office, not the taxpayer.
The new JPK V7 means new obligations not only for entrepreneurs, but also accounting offices that provide services to them. In order to protect their own interests, and to limit the liability of accounting offices, they should audit the concluded contracts, and, if necessary, introduce the necessary modifications to the applicable template and sign annexes with current clients.