On 6 February 2013, the Dutch State Secretary of Finance published a new Decree regarding the VAT treatment of the sale, distribution and use of phone cards and mobile phone contracts. The Decree entered into force on 7 February 2013, although businesses have until 1 July 2013 to adapt to some of the new rules. The Decree includes a number of substantive changes. Additionally, the Secretary of State provides a number of definitions.
The impact of the Decree is not limited to telecommunications businesses, but also affects agents / distributors and content providers. All these parties may have to change parts of their processes and systems. Find out more
As reported some time ago the EU Commission is working on the proposal of a Voucher Directive, which will amend the VAT Directive with rules on vouchers.
Please find the current draft of the proposal here.
This is another topic that will be discussed during our meeting of the B2C 2015 Working Group on 24 October 2012 in Brussels. If you are not already member of this group, contact Sophie Claessens directly.
On 24 September 2012 the German Ministry of Finance issued a decree (only available in German language) implementing the principles of the ECJ decision in the “Lebara” case. You can read more of this case here, here and here.
Each sale of single purpose prepaid cards is regarded as a telecommunication service if these cards are sold in the supplier’s own name. Otherwise, if the sale is made in the name of a third person, an intermediary service is on hand. Whether there is a telecommunication service or an intermediary service should be considered on each distribution level.
A single purpose prepaid card in the sense of the decree requires that it can exclusively be used for telephone calls by means of the provided infrastructure, and that it contains all information necessary to make calls.
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In the next couple of posts I will go through the various main items of the EU Voucher Directive proposal. Let’s start with the single purpose voucher which seem to be major pain for some of the biggest players in the voucher industry.
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May seems to be a very busy month for everyone dealing with vouchers.
First the ECJ’s judgement in the case C-520/10 Lebera has been published on 3 May 2012, which was shortly followed by the text of the proposal for the new Voucher Directive changes to the UK voucher rules, effective as of 10 May 2012. Quite a busy week for a subject discussed for years without any major breakthrough.
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In its submission to the hearing, the European Commission adopted the approach favored by Lebara Ltd, suggesting that in such circumstances the supply by the TelCo (i.e. the card issuer) is liable to reverse charge VAT in the distributor’s country, and that the onward supply by the distributor to the end user is subject to local VAT in the Member State where the distributor is established. Find out more