News regarding invoicing in Italy – clarification provided by the Italian tax authorities

Prepared by Andrea Werner Beilin and Pirola Lorenzo

The Italian tax authorities provided important clarifications related to the electronic invoice and to the cross-border communication during the Telefisco forum, held on 26 January 2023, and the subsequent conferences held with the specialized press.

Below we share the main clarifications provided.

Mandatory electronic invoicing for deemed intra-community supplies

For deemed intra-community supplies referred to in article 41, par. 2, lett. c), D.L. no. 331/1993, there is an obligation to issue an electronic invoice.

In particular, the Italian supplier must send an electronic invoice (document type “TD01”) through the Sistema di Interscambio (“SdI”) by reporting:

  • into the field 1.1.4 < CodiceDestinatario> its own SdI code/PEC code (and not the conventional code “XXXXXXX”);
  • into the block “cessionario/committente” its own foreign VAT ID number; and
  • the nature code “N3.2”, i.e. “intra-community supplies”.

In this way, SdI will deliver the invoice to the same Italian taxable person.

Consequently, the so-called “Esterometro” is not due.

Subsequent local supply to non-resident taxable person

With reference to B2B local supplies made in another EU Member State (e.g., following the above-mentioned deemed intra-community supply), the Italian tax authorities provides important clarifications on reporting and invoicing obligations. In particular, given the necessity to verify the VAT treatment of the Member State of destination of the goods, the following hypotheses can be made:

  • if the Member State has implemented the reverse charge mechanism (referred to in article 194 of Directive 2006/112/EC), the person liable to pay the VAT is the business customer, resident in the EU Member State of destination;
  • differently, the person liable for payment of VAT would remain the Italian taxable person, who would have to fulfil the VAT obligations in the country of destination and issue an invoice from his local VAT position, charging VAT.

With reference to the first hypothesis, the Italian taxable person is required to issue an invoice in the traditional way (e.g. paper) pursuant to article 21, par. 6-bis, d.P.R. no. 633/1972 and to submit the cross-border .XML communication, taking care to report the nature code “N2.1”.

In the second hypothesis, although the transaction is not subject to invoicing obligations according to the Italian VAT law, in the opinion of the Italian tax authorities, the Italian taxable person is required to submit the so-called “Esterometro”.

Supplies applying the VAT margin scheme within the EU

For purchases of used goods (e.g. cars) by an Italian car dealer, with application of the VAT margin scheme from the taxable supplier resident in another EU Member State, the document type code “TD19” and the nature code “N2.2” must be adopted.

According to the Italian tax authorities, it is in any case necessary to ensure that the EU supplier has actually made a supply with application of the VAT margin scheme (and not an intra-community supply).

Cross-border communication for transactions with incorrect VAT treatment applied

For purchases received from a non-resident supplier, identified for VAT purposes in Italy (e.g. with direct identification or a fiscal representative), the Italian business customer must submit the so-called “Esterometro” even if the supplier has erroneously charged VAT instead of applying the reverse charge mechanism.

In particular, the Italian tax authority clarifies that the transaction carried out, although erroneously invoiced, constitutes a transaction carried out by a non-resident taxable person in Italy and, therefore, the Italian customer must comply with the reporting obligation set forth in article 1, par. 3-bis , D. Lgs. no. 127/2015, by reporting, in the “cedente/prestatore” block, the country code and the foreign VAT ID number of the supplier.

Let’s Talk

For more information please contact:

Andrea Werner Beilin

PwC TLS Avvocati e Commercialisti