Belgium: VAT to be chargeable on issuance of invoice

Belgium: VAT to be chargeable on issuance of invoice

A draft law has been proposed to revise the chargeability of value added tax (VAT) rules, so that VAT generally would be chargeable upon the issuance of the invoice. If enacted, the new rules are expected to be effective beginning in 2016.


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Businesses expressed concerns about the rules regarding the chargeability of VAT. To address these concerns, the Belgian tax authorities provided a transitional regime that was eventually extended indefinitely, in anticipation of a new change to the VAT rules. The federal government has now approved a draft law with new rules.

Under the proposal, VAT on the supply of goods and services in business-to-business (B2B) situations would become chargeable upon the issuance of the invoice. If no invoice is issued before the 15th of the month following the date of the supply, VAT would be chargeable on that date. If a (partial) payment is made before the supply, VAT would be chargeable on the date of payment.

The rules for intracommunity supplies of goods and services would not change, and neither would the cash based regime for most business-to-consumer (B2C) supplies. For supplies of movable goods and services to public bodies (B2G supplies), the government would provide a cash based regime, except in instances when a reverse charge applies.

The draft law has been sent to the Council of State for advice, and is subject to revisions. Therefore, the draft law can still be changed. The new rules are expected to enter into force as from 1 January 2016.

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