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Practical Handbook VAT 2022

Taxpayer obligations

Taxable persons have, inter alia, the following obligations:

1.Obligation to submit declarations for information purposes.

With regard to VAT, the following should be noted:

  • File declarations relating to the commencement, modification and cessation of the activities that determine their liability to tax (form 036 or 037), as well as, where applicable, the declaration of commencement, modification or cessation of operations included in the special regimes applicable to distance sales and certain domestic supplies of goods and services (form 035).

  • Submit annually, if applicable, information on their economic transactions with third parties (form 347).

  • File, if applicable, the recapitulative declaration of intra-Community transactions (form 349).

  • File an annual summary return (form 390), unless exempted by Order of the Minister of Finance and Civil Service.

For taxable persons who must keep their VAT registry books through the E-Office, the obligations to file the annual declaration of transactions with third parties, form 347, as well as the annual VAT summary declaration, form 390, are eliminated.

2.Obligation to submit self-assessments and to pay the amount thereof.

3.Identification obligation.

Taxpayers must request the tax identification number from the Administration, as well as communicating and accrediting it in the cases established.

4.Invoicing and accounting obligations.

Taxable persons liable to VAT:

  • They must issue and deliver invoices for their transactions and keep copies of them.

  • They have to keep such accounts and records as may be prescribed, without prejudice to the provisions of the Commercial Code and other accounting rules.

The way of complying with the obligation to keep VAT registration books was changed in December 2016 with effect from 1 July 2017.

From that date, taxpayers with a monthly settlement period and those who voluntarily opt to do so must keep their tax records through the electronic office of the State Tax Administration Agency.

Therefore, the group obliged to use this new system of keeping the registry books is made up of all taxpayers with a monthly settlement period:

  • Registered in the REDEME (VAT Monthly Refund Register).

  • Large companies for VAT purposes.

  • VAT groups.

For this purpose, it should be specified that taxable persons who are included in this group and who only carry out exempt transactions included in Articles 20 and 26 of the Tax Law are obliged to keep their VAT registration books in the same way, i.e. through the Tax Agency's Electronic Headquarters.

Although it is not necessary to keep the register of invoices issued when they are not obliged to issue invoices for all their transactions, in accordance with the provisions of the Regulation governing invoicing obligations, approved by Royal Decree 1619/2012, of 30 November, they do have the obligation to keep the register of invoices received, in general, regardless of whether the activity carried out is totally exempt from tax and without the right to deduct the fees paid for the acquisition of goods and services for said activity.(Consultation of the Taxation General Directorate V1588-17)

5.Obligation to appoint a representative

In the case of taxable persons not established in the Community, unless they are established in the Canary Islands, Ceuta or Melilla, or in a State with which there are instruments of mutual assistance similar to those established in the Community, they must appoint a representative for the purposes of complying with the obligations laid down in the Law on VAT.

By way of exception, entrepreneurs or professionals covered by the special schemes for distance sales and certain domestic supplies of goods and services do not have to appoint a representative.

This chapter will briefly deal with the obligation to report through the census form (the rest of the informative declarations are the subject of other chapters) and the invoicing and registration obligations.