Recovering VAT in Europe outside country of residence
Thread poster: NR_Stedman

NR_Stedman  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:36
French to English
Apr 28, 2008

General Case: If you are a Freelance translator based in one EC country can you recover the VAT paid in another EC country (for instance if you buy a program/computer/make telephone calls when you are working in a country outside your country of residence) and if so how?

Specific Case: translator residing and paying VAT (TVA) in France but working 3 months of the year in Italy. How do I recover IVA paid on all my expenses in Italy.

Thanks in advance for any help

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Lori Cirefice  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:36
French to English
Find a specialized company Apr 28, 2008

There are companies specialized in VAT recovery, they take care of everything and charge a commission, but I believe it's worth it, especially if you have a large amount to recover. If the amount to recover is less than 200€, maybe forget about it ... too complicated to recover for small amounts.

You will need :
- a document proving that you are VAT registered (usually needs to be signed/stamped by your tax authorities)
- all the ORIGINAL invoices, in the proper format (keep copies)
- whatever forms/proxy the VAT recovery company asks you to fill in

In my experience, it usually takes at least a year to get the VAT back. I have done this (from France) for Italian and German VAT. I was not successful with Spain, there was some "apostille" I had to get from the Préfecture, and the Préfecture had no idea what that was, so I gave up!

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