when do you need to register FOR VAT IN FRANCE ?
As a business established outside France, you may have to apply for a VAT registration number in France to the extent that you are regarded as the person responsible for VAT payment vis-à-vis the local tax authorities. Here is a list of examples where you normally have to register for VAT purpose in France :
YOU SUPPLY GOODS SHIPPED FROM A MEMBER STATE TO PRIVATE CUSTOMERS located in France. These sales named “ DISTANCE SALES“ must be charged with French VAT.
YOU SUPPLY DOMESTIC DELIVERIES OF GOODS TO FRENCH PRIVATE INDIVIDUALS or businesses not VAT registered in France and have to apply VAT (reverse charge scheme not applicable),
YOU HAVE GOODS SHIPPED FROM FRANCE to an EU Member State and deliver them to a business client (intra-Community deliveries), or have them shipped to a third country outside the European Union (exports) .
YOU SUPPLY WORKS AND OTHER SERVICES RELATED TO AN IMMOVABLE PROPERTY LOCATED IN FRANCE, , e.g. provision of services of expertise or real estate agent, provision of accommodation or re-invoicing of hotel expenses, architect services or local supervision offices, which are liable to VAT in the country where the real estate is located, when the customer is a private individual or a company not VAT registered in France (reverse charge scheme not applicable).
You supply PASSENGER TRANSPORT IN FRANCE. Subject to specific exemptions, such services are normally liable to VAT in the country where the transport is performed based on distance covered.
You provide SHORT TERM RENTALS OF MEANS OF TRANSPORT (less than 30 days for cars and 90 days for boats) in France which are liable to VAT in the country where you make the mean of transport available to the lessee.
If you grant ACCESS TO CONFERENCES, trade fairs, training sessions/seminars located in France to several companies, you will normally have to charge VAT in the EU Member State where the exhibition/seminar takes place.
You IMPORT GOODS IN FRANCE and have to reverse charge the VAT on imports on French VAT returns.
You buy SERVICES FROM A SERVICE PROVIDER LOCATED OUTSIDE FRANCE for the purpose of a liaison office or any other establishment you hold in France and must charge VAT under the reverse charge rule in France (the recipient must self-assess the VAT due and can recover the VAT at once on his own VAT return) ;
You supply ONLINE SERVICES TO PRIVATE CLIENTS residing in France (e.g. website supply, web-hosting, distance maintenance of programs, supply of images, text, information, music, films, games, e-learning, etc.), that are liable to VAT in the country where the customers reside.
VAT registration does not mean creating a company !
WHAT ARE DOCUMENTS REQUIred FOR VAT REGISTRATION ?
FOR COMPANIES ESTABLISHED IN EU:
Recent incorporation certificate or excerpt of trade register;
- Articles of association (with a non-binding translation in French of the business purpose of the company);
- IMP form to be completed in 2 original copies;
- VAT number in EU member state.
FOR COMPANIES ESTABLISHED OUTSIDE THE EU:
- Recent incorporation certificate or abstract of trade register;
- Articles of association (with a non-binding translation in French of the business purpose of the company).
WHAT IS THE TIME LIMIT NECESSARY FOR OBTAINING A VAT NUMBER BY THE FRENCH TAX AUTHORITIES ?
Companies NOT located in a country member of the European Union : one month.
Companies located in a country member of the European Union : two months.
WHEN DO YOU NEED TO APPOINT A TAX REPRESENTATIVE ?
The companies established in the EU or in non-EU countries that has signed an administrative assistance agreement with France are relieved of the obligation to appoint a tax representative in France. They may perform themselves the formalities for VAT registration and tax returns purposes. However, due to the complex tax rules, it is useful to appoint a VAT specialist who acts as a tax agent and performs formalities for VAT registration and for tax and Intrastat returns purposes on their behalf.
The companies established in non-EU countries that has not signed an administrative assistance agreement with France have to appoint a tax representative in France who is fully and severally liable for the payment of VAT and possible penalties vis-à-vis the tax authorities.
what can we do fOR yOU ?
LRF VAT registration service covers the entire process from reviewing your business activities to confirm whether a VAT registration is really appropriate.
Additional VAT registrations in other EU Member States may be required due to the international aspect of the activities as your business grows. Whenever there is a need for additional VAT registrations, our European partners from the TRA can help you by offering :
- assistance with VAT registration in 16 EU Member States and Switzerland;
- one single contact, the client relationship manager, who will coordinate the VAT registration in several countries
Do not hesitate to contact us for any assistance !