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Italy COVID-19 VAT measures

  • Aug 10, 2020 | Richard Asquith

10 Aug - VAT payers may opt for staged payments on VAT liabilities incurred during the coronavirus crisis. This is instead of the current delay to 16 Sept (see below). The payment schedule is as follows:

  1. Four monthly instalments of 50% of the liability payable between September and December 2020.
  2. Twenty four monthly instalments for the remainder 50% until Dec 2022.

17 June - Ministers are reported in the media to be considering a Italian VAT rate cut to support the economy during the COVID-19 crisis.

15 June - VAT payments may be delayed to 16 September on certain VAT liabilities. Small businesses (less than €50m turnover) which have had a 33% cut in revenue between March-April compared to same period in 2019. For larger businesses above €50m turnover, the reduction must be 50% or more. Micro-businesses (less than €2m turnover), tourism and sports-related sectors given blanket delay.

3 Jun - Italy is to postpone its new Sugar Tax until the start of 2021.

28 May - Italy is to delay the introduction of pre-completed VAT returns for resident businesses from 1 July 2020 to 1 January 2021. The annual VAT return 2020 will be precompleted.

15 May - Italy has abandoned plans to raise VAT to 25% on 1 January 2021. VAT payment deadlines for March, April and May for small businesses have been extended to 16 September

7 May - Italy has extended VAT returns and Annual returns filing extensions to 30 June to non-established businesses.

23 April - the update of technical requirements on SdI live invoice reporting, commencing 1 October 2020, will not be enforced until 31 December 2020.

Update 9 April - the Council of Ministers liquidity decree has announced delays on VAT returns for April and May may be delayed until 30 June. Repayments may be in via payment plan of up to 5 months. Small businesses (<€50million turnover) must show a 33% or more decline in revenues since March; Large businesses above this threshold must show a 50% or more decline. Businesses must show a 33% of more decline in revenues in certain regions. 

Update, 7 April: The Italian tax office confirms non-resident VAT payers have not been provided with delays on returns or VAT payments.

Update 17 March: VAT payments due by 16th March are delayed until 20 March for businesses with a turnover about €2million per annum. For small bunsinesses below this threshold, payments are postponed until 31 May. This applies to resident taxpayers only. All filings are postponed to 30 June, including the 2019 Annual VAT return.

Specific deadlines for tourism, cultural, transport, catering, sport and similar sectors are being introduced.

Until further updates, for non-resident businesses, the 2019 annual return is due by 30 April 2020. Quarter 1 VAT return should be submitted by 1 June 2020. The corresponding Intrastat is due 27 April 2020.

Businesses may apply for a five-month payment plan instead.

Italy’s Agenzia Entrate had announced last week the suspension of the tax and Value Added Tax system in response to the worsening coronavirus Covid-19 situation. Follow Avalara’s live  global coronavirus Covid-19 VAT measures tracker.

The announcement means all non-returns activities, collections, audits and litigation by the office of the Revenue Agency are suspended.

This is one of the provisions contained in the directive signed by the Director-General of Revenue, Ernesto Maria Ruffini, following the Prime Ministerial Decree of 11 March 2020 for the fight against the spread of Coronavirus.

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VP Global Indirect Tax
Richard Asquith
VP Global Indirect Tax Richard Asquith
Richard Asquith is VP Global Indirect Tax at Avalara, helping businesses understand their compliance obligations as they grow globally. He can be contacted at: He is part of the European leadership team which won International Tax Review's 2019 Tax Technology Firm of the Year. Richard qualified as an accountant with KPMG in the UK, and went on to work in Hungary, Russia and France with EY.

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