Invoicing

In order to claim input VAT on the basis of an invoice, such invoice must show specific details. In order to claim deduction of input VAT it is required that an invoice show in principle all invoice details. These rules governing the issue of invoices also apply to invoices concerning advance payments and self-billing. Simplifications are provided for small-value invoices, travel tickets and documentation with regard to tourist luggage

What information must an invoice contain?

Invoices must contain the following information:

  • the name and address of the taxable person making the supply of goods or services;
  • the name and address of the customer (recipient of the supply of goods or services);
  • The customer´s VAT identification number; the obligation to indicate the customer´s VAT identification number exists only if the amount is more than EUR 10 000 and the taxable person is established in Austria;
  • the quantity and the commercially used description of the goods supplied or the type and scope of the services supplied;
  • the date of the supply of goods or services or the period over which the supply of services extends;
  • the consideration for the supply of goods or services and the applicable tax rate; in case of tax exemption it is necessary to indicate that the said supply of goods or services is tax-exempt;
  • the amount of tax payable on the basis of the consideration;
  • the date of issue;
  • a consecutive number in one or more numerical sequences which is assigned only once for the purpose of identifying the invoice; foreign entrepreneurs need their own number range for supplies in Austria;
  • the VAT identification number of the issuer of the invoice; the obligation to indicate the VAT identification number exists only where the entrepreneur makes supplies of goods or services which entitle to deduction of input VAT;

Example on how to indicate an exempted transaction : " tax-exempt supply of goods"

Points to note when invoicing under the reverse-charge system

If the entrepreneur makes supplies for which the tax liability is shifted to the recipient of the supply the invoice must contain the following information:

  • all invoice details required under “What information must an invoice contain?”
  • the VAT identification number of the recipient of the supply,
  • an indication that the recipient of the supply is liable to pay the tax (see example 1-3).

Example 1: Indication of the legal provision: "second sentence of Sec. 19 (1) VAT Act 1994;” or reverse-charge system in the case of construction services: “Sec. 19 (1a) VAT Act 1994”

Example 2: "The tax liability is shifted to the recipient of the supply"

Example 3: "Reverse-charge system"

Please note that it is not allowed to separately indicate the VAT on such invoices. Otherwise the entrepreneur making the supply additionally owes the VAT indicated on the invoice.

If there is no requirement for a foreign entrepreneur to register for VAT in Austria (i.e. in the case of reverse-charge), entrepreneurs that are active within the territory of the EU must indicate the VAT identification number of the respective EU member state. Entrepreneurs in third countries need not indicate a VAT identification number, if they do not have such a number.

What is meant by small-value invoices? What information must they contain?

Small-value invoices are invoices where the total amount does not exceed EUR 400 (including VAT). In such cases it is sufficient to indicate the following information:

  • the name and address of the entrepreneur making the supply of goods or services;
  • the quantity and the commercially used description of goods supplied or the type and scope of services supplied;
  • the date / period of the supply of goods or services;
  • the consideration and the amount of tax for the supply of goods or services as a total amount;
  • the tax rate;
  • the date of issue.

The simplifications concerning small-value invoices do not apply to the intra-EU supply of goods

What are the specific features of invoices concerning the intra-EU supply of goods?

Invoices for the intra-EU supply of goods must, in principle, contain the invoice details required under "What information must an invoice contain?" (see link below) and the following should be noted:

  • the VAT identification number of the issuer of the invoice (supplier),
  • the VAT identification number of the recipient (except in case of supply of new vehicles),
  • an indication of the tax-exempt intra-EU supply of goods (see example 1).

Example 1: " tax-exempt intra-EU supply of goods";

The simplifications for small-value invoices do not apply to the intra-EU supply of goods.

May the recipient of the supply issue self-billed invoices? Are self-billed invoices considered to be invoices?

Self-billing is an operation where it is not the supplier but the recipient of the supply who prepares the supplier's invoice. Self-billed invoices which substitute invoices in business transactions are considered invoices only if special requirements are met:

  • the self-billed invoice must contain all invoice details required under "What information must an invoice contain?"
  • there is agreement between the supplier and the recipient of the supply that self-billed invoices are being issued
  • the entrepreneur making the supply is entitled to separately indicate VAT on the invoices
  • the self-billed invoice has been forwarded to the entrepreneur making the supply (it is necessary to provide evidence thereof to the tax office)

The self-billed invoice loses its invoice status if the recipient of the self-billed invoice contradicts the amount of tax stated therein.