DIVA digital stamp for companies
The DIVA system the only valid system in Spain for VAT refunds to travellers.This voluntary application period aims to give shops time to make the necessary adaptations to their systems.
The DIVA system is based on shops, directly or through tax-free companies, sending the Tax Agency the electronic refund deposits (hereinafter ERD) corresponding to the tax-free sales they carry out.
This should be done upon carrying out the sale so as to enable the QR (or bar code) to be given to the traveller.Ultimately, if technical problems arise, this information may be sent to the Tax Agency at a later time, provided the following conditions are met:it is sent before the traveller leaves the European Union and they have a digital or paper copy of the corresponding QR or bar code.
The DIVA system only works when the traveller's departure is through a Spanish port or airport.For this reason, it is convenient to print the traveller refund document out, since if it is stamped in a different European country, the process will have to be manual.
This information can be sent by shops in two ways:
- Web service for mass sending of information (appropriate for a profile of large distribution chains and shops that use the services of tax-free operators).The technical specifications of these services can be consulted on the same page
- Website form on the Tax Agency's page (especially designed for SMEs).This form is available in the administration section of this page.
Once the tourist has obtained the digital stamp, they must request the VAT refund from the collaborating company or directly from the shop.In this second case, the shop must check that this ERD has been stamped as valid and whether it is still pending refund.This consultation can be carried out in the procedures on this page.
Finally, the shop refunding the traveller must notify this to the Tax Agency through the means set out for this on this page.
Article 117.Three of Law 37/1992, of 28 December, on Value Added Tax, establishes that the refund of the instalments borne in the acquisitions of goods made under the passenger regime regulated in Article 21.2 of the Law itself, may be carried out through cooperating entities under conditions that are determined by regulations.
Article 9.1.2.,point B) of the Tax Regulation, approved by Royal Decree 1624/1992, of 29 December, provides that the Tax can be refunded through cooperating entities authorised by the Tax Agency.
It should be noted that the entities that intend to act as collaborators in the return of VAT on passenger systems must ensure their actions comply with the following requirements:
- Obtain authorisation to act as a collaborating entity, to intervene in the refund of VAT to travellers
- If applicable, notify the AEAT of the location of the refund points.
- Enter into contracts for commercial collaboration with sellers.As stated in the authorisations, cooperating entities cannot intervene in the refund of VAT passed on to travellers by sellers with whom there is no prior affiliation contract.Membership contracts shall establish the rights and obligations arising from membership and may not incorporate clauses that allow an affiliate to prevent or limit, directly or indirectly, the accession of any other seller to the return system of the collaborating organisation.
- At the time of sale, the seller must always verify the identity of the traveller and their residence outside the European Union by checking their passport, identity card or other.The above obligation shall be fulfilled materially by the seller in any event and at the time and place of purchase.
- The seller shall issue the electronic refund document (DER) and forward it to AEAT.The dispatch and referral may be carried out in two ways:
- By means of the form available at AEAT’s website.
- By means of its own software or that provided by an entity authorised to intervene as a collaborating organisation in the refund of VAT on a passenger basis.Whatever the method of dispatch, the obligation to issue the ERD must be materially fulfilled by the taxable person and the person responsible for the operation, i.e. the retailer.
- The seller must give the traveller a copy of the DER.
- The traveller, within three months of the sale, must present the goods at customs, which will prove the actual exit of the goods from the territory of the EU by means of a DER visa.The visa shall be issued via electronic means when the export customs office is situated in the territory of application of the tax.
- The traveller will present the DER visa to the authorised entity.The presentation may be made at refund points or electronically.
- The collaborating organisation shall verify the DER visa.
- The collaborating organisation shall pay the traveller, stating the conformity of the same, the Tax entered in the electronic documents of reimbursement, excluding the amount the appropriate commission applicable according to the table of returns approved for the purpose in Order HAP/2652/2012, of 5 December.The collaborating organisation must inform the AEAT that the payment has been made effective.In any case, the traveller may choose to request the return of the supported Value Added Tax fees directly from the supplier.
- The collaborating organisation shall forward the DER to the seller.
- As expressly stated in the authorisations issued, failure to comply with the requirements and conditions implied by the authorisation granted will result in the immediate repeal of the authorisation.Among others, the following are causes of revocation:
- That the obligation to verify the identity and residence of the traveller is not fulfilled materially by the seller at the time and place of sale.
- That the obligation to issue the DER is not fulfilled materially by the seller, while the dispatch of the DER by the traveller is totally prohibited.