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  • Service: Tax, Global Indirect Tax
  • Type: Business and industry issue
  • Date: 2/25/2013

Poland - Amendments to the Polish VAT Act 

Poland - Amendments
Amendments to the Polish VAT Act were adopted by Parliament at the end of 2012. They will be implemented in three stages over the next 12 months.

The most significant changes include:


  1. Changes from 1 January 2013

    New rules regarding bad debt relief

    If an invoice remains unpaid 150 days after the payment deadline, the purchaser must correct the input tax deduction and exclude the invoice until payment is made. If they fail to do so, a penalty of 30 percent of the tax subject to correction may be imposed.


    Use of exchange rates

    To convert foreign currency invoices into Polish zloty (PLN), it is permissible to use exchange rates published by the European Central Bank, as well as the rate published by the National Bank of Poland. In these situations, the euro (EUR) is the reference currency through which calculations in other currencies must be made into PLN.


    The place of supply for the hiring of means of transport

    The place of supply for the hiring of means of transport (other than short-term hiring) to non-taxable persons will be the place where the recipient is established (has their permanent address or resides).


    The place of supply for the hiring of recreational boats (other than short-term hiring) to non-taxable persons will be the place where the boat is made available for hire.


    Issuance of invoices

  • No requirement to issue internal invoices

    This amendment abolishes the obligation to issue internal invoices, which currently have to be issued for importing services, intra-EU acquisitions of goods or the free-of-charge transfer of goods.


  • Introduction of simplified invoices

    Taxpayers can issue a new type of invoice – the simplified invoice – provided the gross amount of the documented transaction does not exceed EUR100 or PLN450.


  • Electronic invoices

    The new rules will liberalize provisions regarding the verification of the authenticity of invoice origin and contents, and provisions around accepting e-invoices. Any methods of business control will be sufficient, for example matching invoices with the accompanying documents (e.g. an agreement, a purchase order, a transport document).


  • Summary invoices

    It will be possible to issue one invoice documenting all the supplies of goods or services performed in the whole month, providing the invoice is issued no later than the last day of the month.


  1. Changes from 1 April 2013

    Supply of goods settled by the purchaser (reverse charge)

    When goods are supplied within Polish territory to customers established in Poland, the reverse charge mechanism will apply only if the supplier has neither its establishment, nor fixed place of business in Poland, and additionally, is not registered for Polish VAT. If the supplier is registered for VAT in Poland, general invoicing rules will apply.


    Applying zero VAT rate on intra-EU supplies of goods

    The requirement to include the EU VAT number of the taxpayer and the purchaser on an invoice in order to apply the zero percent VAT rate will be abolished.


    Place of supply rules1 for chain transactions

    Transport will be attributed to a given supply on the basis of the terms and conditions of the supply.


    Free-of-charge transfers of goods and the definition of samples

    The giveaway of samples and small value gifts will not be taxable, provided they are within the business activity of the taxpayer. Additionally, the giveaway of printed and promotional materials will no longer be out of scope of taxation.

  2. Changes from 1 January 2014

    Definition of taxable base

    A new, extended definition of the taxable base based on the European VAT Directive will be introduced. According to the provisions, the taxable amount shall include everything which constitutes consideration obtained from the customer or a third party, including subsidies, grants and any other payments of a similar nature that have a direct impact on the price of supply of goods or services.


    The moment when the tax point arises

    The tax liability will arise, as a rule, on the delivery of the goods or the service performed, regardless of when the VAT invoice is issued.


    Partial VAT deduction

    The rules for calculating the proportion for partial VAT deduction will be changed.


    Deadline for issuing VAT invoices

    As a general rule, VAT invoices will need to be issued no later than the fifteenth day of the month following the month in which the goods were delivered or the service was performed.


    The moment when the right to deduct VAT arises

    Input tax will be deductable in the same period that the deductible tax becomes chargeable, but no earlier than the period when the purchaser received the invoice or customs document.


    Advance payments in the export of goods

    To apply the zero percent VAT rate on advance payments, the goods would need to be dispatched within two months of the end of the month in which the payment was received. The dispatch must be appropriately documented (document IE599). This deadline may be extended if it is justified by the specific nature of the export supply.


    VAT exemption on second-hand goods

    VAT exemption on second-hand goods will be abolished.


    Confirmation of receipt of correcting invoices

    Current provisions for decreasing the taxable base will still apply. That is, taxpayers are obliged to obtain confirmation of receipt of the correcting invoice by the purchaser of the goods or services. However, under the new amendments, if it is not possible for the purchaser to obtain confirmation of receipt of the correcting invoice and the taxpayer can prove that they attempted to deliver the correcting invoice, the taxable base may still be decreased if the taxpayer has documentation to prove that the purchaser has information about the conditions of the transaction, and that the transaction was performed on the terms indicated on the correcting invoice.



1 “place of supply rules”= the rules governing the determination of the place of supply (and hence taxation) of a transaction

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Global Indirect Tax Brief: February 2013

GITB: February 2013
Updates on key tax issues and challenges in indirect tax being faced by taxpayers in countries around the world.