How to request a VAT refund from another EU country
You may be entitled to a refund of the VAT included in the purchase price of goods or services you have bought if
- your business is registered for VAT in Finland
- you buy goods or services from abroad for your VAT-liable business activities
- your business is not liable to pay VAT on sales in the country where the goods or services were bought.
Request a refund from another EU country in MyTax. You will need the invoices and receipts on the goods and services you have bought to support your VAT refund claim.
Your refund request will be processed by the tax authority of the country receiving the request.
How to request a VAT refund from another EU country in MyTax
If your business’s domicile is in the Åland Islands, you cannot make a request in MyTax. Contact the tax authority of the country receiving the request and ask how to make a refund request.
Frequently askes questions about requesting a refund
Finnish self-employed individuals can request a VAT refund on goods and services bought in another EU country and on goods imported to another EU country if the following requirements are met:
- they are not registered for VAT and have had no obligation to register for VAT in the country of purchase
- they do not have a permanent establishment or the domicile of their financial operations in the country of purchase
- they have not sold other goods or provided other services in the country of purchase, except
- transport services and other related services exempt from tax
- services subject to the VAT reverse charge mechanism (meaning that the VAT is paid by the buyer).
The right to a refund is equal to the VAT-liable businesses’ right to deduct VAT in the EU country where the purchase was made.
If your business sells both VAT-exempt and VAT-liable goods or services in Finland, you can request a VAT refund only for the part of your purchase that is associated with your VAT-liable business activities.
You must request a refund by 30 September of the year following the refund period. For example, if you request a refund for your 2019 invoices, you must make a refund request by 30 September 2020.
The period that your request concerns should be at least 3 consecutive calendar months within a calendar year. The period may be shorter than 3 months only if it ends on 31 December. The maximum period is one calendar year.
The refund request period always starts on the first day of the month and ends on the last day of the month.
If you request a refund for a period of no less than 3 but less than 12 months, the minimum refund is €400.
If the period is a calendar year or ends on 31 December, the minimum refund is €50.
If you are requesting a refund from an EU country whose currency is not the euro, the minimum amounts are the corresponding amounts in the currency of the country in question.
You can ask an agent to make a request on your behalf. In that case, you must attach an authorisation to the request, specifying what the agent is authorised to do. The rules for whether an agent can make a refund request and act as a refund recipient vary from country to country. Check the details with the tax authority of the country of refund.
If an agent is submitting a refund request on your behalf, you must attach an authorisation.
If the invoice concerns fuel and the price without VAT (taxable amount) is less than €250, you do not have to attach the invoice. If the taxable amount is over €250, check with the tax authority of the country of refund whether invoices should be scanned and attached to the request.
If the invoice or import document does not concern fuel and the price without VAT is less than €1,000, you do not have to attach it to the request. If the taxable amount is over €1,000, check with the tax authority of the country of refund whether invoices and import documents should be scanned and attached to the request.
If you prepare a VAT refund request for Ireland, all the related invoices are mandatory enclosures. If you send a request with no invoice scans or photocopies attached, Ireland will not process it.
Although the refunding procedure is very similar in all the EU countries, some details may be different, such as:
- language and currency
- codes identifying the goods and services
- allowed number of requests per year
- authority of a representative or agent
- procedures relating to attachments, for example whether scanned invoices must be attached.
You can check the differences in the European Commission Manual or on the website of the tax authority of the country of refund.
You will receive a decision within 4 months from the date of receipt, if further information is not requested.
You will receive a decision within 6 months from the date of receipt, if further information is requested.
You will receive a decision within 8 months from the date of receipt, if multiple requests for further information have to be made.
If the processing takes longer than stated above, the authority of the refunding country must pay interest on the refund.
If you want to appeal against a refund decision, file a claim for adjustment in writing. You cannot appeal against a refund decision in MyTax. More information on appeals is available from the tax authority of the country of refund.
- After you have made your request in MyTax, we will forward it to the country from which you are requesting a refund.
- When the country in question has received your request, you will be notified by e-mail or letter. You will also receive the information in MyTax if the country has approved MyTax as a communication channel. If you do not receive a notice of receipt, you can contact the tax authority of the country of refund.
- After your request has been processed, you will be notified by e-mail or letter. You will also receive the decision in MyTax, if the country of refund has approved MyTax as a communication channel. Some countries send the decision to MyTax only.
Check the accepted codes for the specific country where you are sending your VAT refund request.
Check the entire string of code numbers including the main code and the subcodes. If you send a request with incorrect codes, the country can reject your VAT refund.