What is VIES?
VIES (VAT Information and Exchange System) is an IT system enabling the verification of VAT payers of business entities registered as making intra-EU transactions. Using the search engine, the user can check whether a given entrepreneur is registered as a trader in the European Union. VIES was developed by the European Commission and the data for the system comes from national databases. For more information, please visit Official VIES Website.
How to use VIES verification?
To check a contractor in the VIES system, you must provide the EU Member State of origin and its EU VAT number.
The results that can be obtained from the system are confirmation that the VAT number is active or information that the VAT number for cross-border transactions within the European Union is invalid.
Depending on their national data protection laws, some country will also provide the name and address associated with a given EU VAT number as they are registered in national databases.
Why check VIES?
Verification of the contractor in VIES is necessary if you want to apply the 0% VAT rate. To make an intra-EU supply of goods or services transaction, both parties must be taxpayers registered for intra-EU supplies.
Who is required to have UE VAT?
Every entrepreneur who intends to make an intra-EU transaction, i.e. within the countries belonging to the European Union, is obliged to register for EU VAT.
Information available on VIES is not correct. How to correct it?
If a VAT number is shown as invalid, in the first instance check with your customer that the number quoted is correct (correct number of characters, correct length and country prefix). If the number quoted by your customer, even after checking, continues to be ‘invalid’, you should ask that business to contact his/her tax administration to request that the data in the national VAT Information Exchange System (VIES) be updated (only national tax administrations can update VIES data).
What period of time is the information available?
Only confirmation on whether or not a number is valid. It is not possible to confirm the validity of a VAT number in the past. It is possible to do it only for the current day.
VIES did not find the company, why?
If it turns out that the VIES search engine has not found the given VAT number, it is possible that the VAT number does not exist, has not been activated for EU transactions, the registration of the number has not yet been completed or the entity has been removed from the database of EU taxpayers.
Of course, first of all, it is worth making sure that we have entered the VAT-EU number correctly, or contact the contractor and ask if the number is correct. If he maintains that the data provided is correct, and VIES indicates otherwise, the entrepreneur should contact the tax administration in order to clarify this situation or update the data.
Is it possible to obtain a EU VAT number after providing the name and address of the supplier?
It is not possible to search for a EU VAT number based on the name or address.
What is a recapitulative statement?
Taxable persons making the intra-EU supplies report the total supplies in the relevant quarter to each taxable person in another EU countries on a recapitulative statement which is submitted to the tax administration of the taxable person making the supply.
What are the EU VAT Member State prefixes?