Spanish VAT recovery

For non-resident companies which incur Spanish VAT on any supplies, and if they are not Spanish VAT registered, they may submit a special reclaim to recover the VAT suffered.

Claims may be submitted on a quarterly basis. In addition a fifth, final claim can be filed the following year.

How do EU companies reclaim Spanish VAT?

Foreign businesses established in another EU country can reclaim any Spanish VAT through the EU 8th Directive VAT system. The system for the reclaim of Spanish VAT for companies from other EU companies was overhauled and simplified in 2010.

EU companies can now submit Spanish VAT recovery applications through an online portal operated by their own national tax authority. This is then processed and submitted to the Spanish tax authority which must refund the VAT directly to the company. The deadline for submissions is 30 September of the year following the year in which the invoice was raised.

How do non-EU companies reclaim Spanish VAT?

Non-EU companies use a slightly different process for VAT recovery in Spain – the 13th VAT Directive. Non-EU companies must first ensure that there is a tax reciprocity agreement between Spain and their home territory. If not, then no Spain VAT may be reclaimed. For example, US companies cannot recover Spanish VAT.

If there is reciprocity, the business can complete and submit a special form to the Spanish tax authorities. This should generally be accompanied by supporting original invoices, plus a local tax certificate. Spanish VAT reclaims must be submitted by 30 June of the year following the year in which the invoice was raised. If this deadline is missed, then the VAT is lost. Non-EU companies must appoint a fiscal representative for the purposes of recovering VAT.

What type of Spanish VAT can be recovered?

Under the EU’s free market principles, foreign companies are permitted to reclaim the same VAT incurred as a resident Spanish company.

Need a fiscal representative in Spain?

Non-EU businesses selling in Spain 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 Spanish VAT compliance?

Researching Spanish 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.