Italian lawmakers created a legislative decree and are employing
incentives rather than penalties to encourage more taxpayers to
adopt electronic invoicing.
Following in the footsteps of Portugal, Italy has taken the
incentive approach to increasing the use of B2B e-invoicing to
simplify administration and accounting, and reduce the reliance on
Italy's legislative decree no. 127 gazetted on 18 August
2015 came into force on 2 September. A raft of measures will now be
implemented to encourage the use of e-invoicing, including a free,
Revenue Agency-provided system for the creation and use of
e-invoices by VAT-registered businesses. This system is to be
rolled out by 1 July 2016.
From a tax obligation perspective, Italy is making the adoption
of e-invoicing enticing by offering the following incentives:
Exemption from submitting the
'Spesometro' communication, Intrastat communication with
regard to intra-community purchases of goods and services and the
communication of purchases from suppliers established in San Marino
Priority status for e-invoicing
taxpayers with regard to VAT refunds – annual return claims
to be dealt with within three months of submission.
One year reduction in the usual
four-year tax audit procedure period, in cases where a taxpayer can
guarantee payments are able to be traced.
Simplifications in some taxable
person categories with regard to VAT compliance, and the complete
exemption from input and output VAT bookkeeping and conformity
Exemptions from submitting additional forms and returns (like
Intrastat and Black List* for entities that will be using the
e-invoicing system) should be taken with a grain of salt. The
e-invoicing system is aimed at increasing visibility of
transactions to Italian tax authorities and over time, decreasing
the number of transactions that are currently 'invisible'
for the tax office.
A transparency hike in day-to-day transactions is something that
needs to be reached - not only in Italy but across the EU - to stop
the VAT system from leaking.
*The Black List declaration was established in Italy in 2010. It
is a return that has to be filed by entities registered for VAT
purposes in Italy who performed business transactions for total
amount exceeding EUR 50,000 in a reporting period with entities
registered or seated in countries which are put on Black List.
Those countries are listed in a decree and are labelled as
"high risk countries", from a tax point of view.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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