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Outstanding issues related to the recapitulative statement

The Federal Ministry of Finance (Bundesministerium der Finanzen, BMF) has once again adjusted the German VAT application decree on the tax exemption for intra-Community supplies. Following publication of its circular of 9.10.2020, outstanding issues arose in practice that have now been clarified in its circular of 20.5.2022.

In the above-mentioned circular from 2020, the BMF had included, for the first time, guidelines on the recapitulative statement (RS) as a condition for the tax exemption for intra-Community supplies (ICS). Since 1.1.2020, accurate information about the respective supply in the RS has been the condition for the existence of an ICS. Here, the supply has to be declared properly, completely and within the stipulated period. Furthermore, the recipient of the supply has to be registered for VAT in another EU Member State. Moreover, the recipient of the supply has to use a valid VAT identification number - which  has been issued to them by another Member State - vis-à-vis the supplier.

If a supply has not been recorded accurately in the RS then this may be corrected. The correction has to be made within one month after the company has detected the discrepancy. In this respect, it should be noted that the correction has to be made for the reporting period in which the supply was made, and not for the reporting period in which the error was detected.

In its circular of 20.5.2022, the financial administration discussed the late submission of an RS and supplemented this with an additional example. If an RS is submitted in full only after the submission deadline has passed then the tax exemption should be granted retroactively. The principles in this circular should be applied for the first time to ICS effected after 31.12.2019.

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