VAT stands for Value Added Tax and is the tax of 21% for services that every consumer pays when buying goods or services. Your clients will also pay a VAT, when they buy a product or service from you. As a supplier, you collect this tax from your clients and you transfer the amount back to the government.
Basically, in what regards VAT, you are an intermediary between the state and the end-consumer.
Since January 2016, if your annual turnover is below 25,000 euros, you can opt for the VAT exemption scheme.
The advantage of this system? You are no more bothered with VAT returns.
The drawback? Dropping VAT also means that you can not get the VAT back on your purchases.
How to submit your V.A.T declaration?
Remember that the government is very strict and imposes penalties on infringement, so be sure to not get distracted while doing this. Or you can let your accountant (or Accountable) do this for you.
When do I have to submit my VAT declaration?
You need to file your VAT every three months and the payment of this VAT to the government needs to happen at the latest on the 20th of the month following when you filed your VAT. Watch out, in December you have to pay an advance on the taxes based on your activities of the fourth trimester.
The Ministry of Finance made a calendar with all the different payment and return periods.
What happens if my VAT Status changes?
You have to fill in form 604A with the correct type of business you want to start. If you do not feel comfortable enough to do it by yourself you can also do this with a registered business counter or with an accountant. Your VAT number is the same as your company number, with BE in front of it.
You want to change things like your address, or the name of your business? In this case, you need to submit a form 604B
There is also a form for that one: form 604C.
How to choose the professional use for expenses
You do not recover the full VAT on your professional expenses. Still, what you recover depends partly on you and the choice of professional use that you make. Apart from that, the tax administration sets the rules.
For example if you have purchased a bike this is fully deductible. However if you ride your new bike as much for fun as for work you need to indicate that professional use for that expense is 50%.
Using the accountable app makes sure these rules apply automatically to your expense and you recover as much VAT as legally possible.
If you want to know more of exactly what you can deduct please please see our section here:
Type of Expense => Vat Deductable => Tax Deductable