Import VAT law

The import Value Added Tax (VAT) law is a particular manifestation of VAT law. As with customs duties, import VAT is levied on goods imported from third countries into the EU. This is why tax exemptions, the reduced sales tax rate, but also the question of accounts-related and documentary evidence is of particular significance in the import of goods.

Does export VAT also exist? The answer to this is no. However, exports from Germany to third countries are generally sales tax exempt if the requisite accounts-related and documentary evidence is provided. But, as the tax office often rejects the sales tax exemption for export deliveries due to the lack of accounts-related and documentary evidence, this circumstance does pose a risk. In cases of such rejection, companies must not only pay the VAT on export shipments in retrospect (standard tax rate currently at 19%), but also interest as a result of the retrospective tax assessment (6% per annum). This interest cannot normally be passed on and is therefore a real burden for the companies affected.

If you have any questions on this topic, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Zollkanzlei!