Four VAT reporting changes in France – What’s new and what’s next?

There are a number of new and upcoming VAT compliance changes in France which impact reporting obligations:

New – French VAT return

The new French VAT return (CA3- 3310) has been officially released. This incorporates the new 2022 requirements including the import VAT reverse charge. The first return to be submitted using the new form was January 2022 which had to be submitted by February 14.

New – Import VAT reverse charge in VAT return

From January 1, 2022, the declaration and payment of import VAT is made directly in the French VAT return instead of the customs declaration i.e. as a reverse charge self-assessed by the taxpayer. The use of the reverse charge for import VAT will be compulsory for all businesses registered for VAT in France (including non-taxable persons who have an intra-community VAT number) and there will be no prior authorisation to use this postponed import VAT procedure required.

New – DEB return replaced by Intrastat and EC Sales List

In addition, this year sees France replace its DEB return (“Declaration des Echanges de Biens”) into two new reporting obligations. France has followed the majority of other EU member states by introducing a separate Intrastat declaration (“l’enquête statistique”) and an EC Sales List (“l’état récapitulatif des livraisons de biens intra-UE”). Historically, France had included both requirements within the single DEB return.

Next – Mandatory e-invoicing and digital reporting

France will introduce a mandatory requirement for businesses to issue e-invoices in a phased approach between July 1, 2024 and January 1, 2026. Businesses will have an obligation to send e-invoices with mandatory fields in a predefined structured format to customers and the French Tax Administration. France’s national e-invoicing platform is Chorus Pro with a new public invoicing portal (Portail Public de Facturation) being launched, and the main e-invoicing format and standard is Factur-X. In addition to mandatory e-invoicing between French businesses, there will also be a new digital reporting requirement for B2C transactions and transactions with foreign customers. It is anticipated that the French tax authority will be able to use the data it receives to pre-populate the French VAT returns for taxpayers in the future. The final technical requirements for e-invoicing will be released in Q2/2022.

Timeline for mandatory issuing of e-invoices

Business size

Mandatory implementation date

Large Companies

July 1, 2024

Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) with workforce of less than 5,000 people and annual sales of less than €1.5 billion or a balance sheet total of less than €2 billion

January 1, 2025

SMEs and Very Small Enterprises (VSEs) with fewer than 250 employees and annual sales of less than €50 million or a balance sheet total of less than €43 million

January 1, 2026

All businesses in France will also need to be able to receive e-invoices in 2024. France joins a growing list of countries which have introduced mandatory e-invoicing, or will do in the near future, including Italy, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Vietnam and Saudi Arabia. As a result, businesses trading across territories are starting to think strategically rather than tactically and seeking to implement an e-invoicing solution that is scalable across countries and regions rather than purchase multiple individual local solutions as and when new mandates appear. 

Find out more about Avalara’s e-invoicing solution

Contact Avalara to discuss VAT compliance in France including how Avalara’s e-invoicing solution can make you compliant with the new rules.

Need a fiscal representative in France?

Non-EU businesses selling in France will need to appoint a fiscal representative alongside completing VAT registration and returns.
Fiscal representatives are responsible for the accurate VAT submissions of their non-EU clients.
Avalara offers a Fiscal Representative Service as part of its international VAT and GST Registration and Returns Service.

Need help with your French VAT compliance?

Researching French VAT legislation is the first step to understanding your VAT compliance needs. Avalara has a range of solutions that can help your business depending on where and how you trade. 

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