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Written by:
Bas Hollenberg


Correction VAT returns

In the event that you find yourself having made a mistake in a past value-added tax return, you need to set the record straight with the Tax and Customs Administration by submitting a supplementary tax return, which you should file within a three-month term of the relevant financial year end – i.e., before the first of April next for inadvertent errors in your value-added tax returns for 2014 – for underreported value-added tax in order to avoid being charged extra.

As a business owner you are under the obligation to file value-added tax returns at monthly, quarterly or annual intervals. To err is human, and so you may find that you have reported too much or too little tax for a particular period and have thus ended up over or underpaying. You can rectify this by filing a supplementary value-added tax return using the designated form (which is downloadable from the Tax and Customs Administration’s web site). It is advisable to file the supplementary tax return promptly (i.e. within the first three months of the next financial year), or the taxman could slap a penalty and/or or interest charge on outstanding tax balance on you.

Value-added tax adjustment

No supplementary tax returns need to be filed for adjustments in the amount of (less than) one thousand euros (€ 1,000.00) each, it being permissible to use a subsequent value-added tax return to set off such modest surplus or shortfall. If the error has run to a greater amount, this will involve a supplementary tax return having to be filed:

  1. Either for overpaid value-added tax, which will prompt the Tax and Customs Administration to hand down a refund decision and reimburse you for your excess payment (possibly augmented by credit interest),
  2. Or for underpaid value-added tax, which will prompt the Tax and Customs Administration to impose a penalty on you in the amount of five percent (5%) of the outstanding value-added tax amount, which you may avoid by filing your supplementary return before the first of April of the new financial year (for underpayments during the previous financial year).

We would point out that your failure (belatedly) to adjust errors (shortfalls) in your past tax returns will expose you to the risk of being fined for having committed an offence if you are ever found out!

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