VAT Authorities Take Careful Step Toward Substance Over Form

In a carefully worded practice note dated October 12, the Belgian VAT authorities have announced that they are relaxing their strict adherence to the form-over-substance approach regarding the conditions for the deduction of the input VAT paid on invoices received (Practice Note 2017/C/64 relating to the invoice as a condition for the exercise of the right to deduct VAT).

Until now, the VAT authorities denied the VAT payer the right to deduct VAT when the invoice was not drawn up in accordance with all elements required by law (for example, the date the invoice was issued, the VAT number, the full name and address of the VAT payer and his customer, the VAT rate or a reference that the transaction is VAT exempt, etc.).

For more, read the contribution in Tax Notes International or contact the author.

Author: Marc Quaghebeur

Marc Quaghebeur is a Belgian tax lawyer with Cabinet DAVID specialising in international tax issues and cross border estate planning. He is a member of the Brussels Bar and the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners. He

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