Import VAT. Customs representation. Warranty


Binding tax ruling V0615-16, issued by the Spanish General Tax Directorate on February 15, 2016.

A customs representative, acting in all cases through direct representation, with a guarantee submitted before the Customs Office to secure the release of the goods, wants to know if for the cases of clients under Special regime of deferral VAT on imports, has to be understood that customs waives the right of retention on the goods, and if the warranty should cover the import VAT debt.

Concerning the taxes on foreign trade, the Spanish General Tax Directorate clarifies the following:

Both the Spanish General Tax Law and the Customs Code provide that the release of the goods can only be granted when it has been paid or guaranteed the amount of the liquidated rights.

These warranties shall be constituted by the debtor or a third party on his behalf.

Being a direct representation (on behalf and for the account of the client), the debtor will be the declarant, the representative will not be indebted to import duties, and shall only be liable for subsidiary of the VAT debt.

Concerning VAT, the Spanish General Tax Directorate clarifies the following:

The General tax law stipulates the right of retention on the goods declared at customs for the payment of customs and tax debt, not to guarantee adequately the payment thereof.

Notwithstanding this, keep in mind that the risk derived from the lack of income from VAT import for those operators included into the Special regime of deferral VAT on imports, will reduce significantly to the extent that included in its VAT return the VAT quota liquidated by Customs, being this VAT deductible from the moment of admission of the customs declaration by the Tax Authorities.

In this regard, the Spanish Tax Authorities announced on its website, the last 7 of April of 2015, that since that day, would not be compulsory, on a general basis, the inclusion of a guarantee amounting to the of import VAT. However, when the Tax Authorities considers it appropriate, may require such security.

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CV 0615 16

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