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France yet to delay VAT returns on coronavirus crisis

  • May 1, 2020 | Richard Asquith

1 May - France has extended the deadline for non-EU businesses to submit their VAT recovery claims from 30 June to  30 September.

22 April - delays new exporter of record EU rule changes die to COVID-19. 

10 April update - France continues not to provide a VAT filing or payment deferment, setting it aside from most other European countries. However, it is offering a discount on VAT payments for the next two months’ returns for businesses in difficulties. The adjustment works as follows:

  • For the March return, due 19 April, affected businesses need only pay 80% of the VAT paid for the previous, February return, as an estimate for the March return. If businesses can show a drop of 50% or more in revenue, including a complete shutdown, then they need only pay 50% of the VAT paid for the February return.
  • For the April return, due 19 May, the above discounts will apply.

Once the COVID-19 pandemic has subsided, taxpayers much submit an adjustment return to report the actual VAT due from March and April.

8 April update - Scanned, PDF or other electronic formats of paper invoices will be acceptable formats for VAT deduction and audit trail evidence during the coronavirus crisis. They are a valid substitue for paper invoices. E-invoices produced under certified signature and storage controls remain valid.

Update 27 March: VAT credit repayments will be accelerated for requests filed electronically. 

France has offered direct tax deferrment measures, see below. However, Value Added Tax returns must still be filed on time for the timebeing. This means submitting VAT returns etc by 19th of each month, as normal. Follow Avalara’s live  global coronavirus VAT measures tracker. 

The latest statement covers direct taxes so far. But is likely to be extended to VAT.

"Due to the impact of the coronavirus epidemic on economic activity, and in accordance with the announcements of the President of the Republic on March 12, 2020, the DGFiP has launched exceptional measures to support businesses.

For businesses (or accountants who represent clients in this situation), it is possible to request from the corporate tax department the postponement without penalty of the payment of their next due dates of direct taxes (down payment of corporate tax, tax on

If they have already paid their March due dates, they may still be able to object to the SEPA direct debit from their online bank, or they can also request reimbursement from their corporate tax department, once the levy is effective."

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VP Global Indirect Tax
Richard Asquith
VP Global Indirect Tax Richard Asquith
Richard Asquith is the former VP Global Indirect Tax at Avalara
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