Non-resident companies in Spain, with registered offices in the European Union

Firstly, Non-Resident companies in Spain which stock in the country and ship products to customers from Spain, with their registered office in a European Union country, are obligated to register in Spain. The purpose is identified themselves and obtain a VAT NIF registration in Spain when they are going to carry out actions with tax implications here.

It is necessary differentiate between the obligation of identification for VAT purposes (obtaining a NIF N, for non-residents) and the existence of a permanent establishment.

Therefore, any European company which sells goods or provide services in Spain is obligated to be identified.

If these sales of goods or services were also aimed at private individuals (natural persons, not businesspeople or professionals), they would be considered VAT taxable persons. That means that they will be obligated to submit VAT returns (303 form) to pay the VAT collected on sales.

On the other hand, the existence of a permanent establishment is different. According to the criteria established by the Directorate General of Taxes in several binding consultations, one of the most recent dated 30 Octobers 2020 (V3248-20), it is not considered a permanent establishment in case of the non-resident company has a distribution centre in Spain, controlled by a logistics operator (this being an independent third party) to attend urgent shipments that may exist in the area.

When logistics operators do not provide exclusive services for the non-resident entities but have other clients and allocates part of its facilities to the non-resident entity and performs only ancillary tasks such as invoicing, and the non-resident entity does not employ its own technical and human resources, it is considered that there is no permanent establishment as established in consultation V2061-16.

The identification which non-resident entities are obligated implies the submission of VAT returns and information forms.

Shipments to Europe from another European country

In case of distance sales to final consumers located in another EU member states (for example: if you send goods from Spain to France), you must be registered at OSS [1]1 , that is the One-Stop shop. Once the distance sales exceed 10,000 euros of turnover in Europe is obligatory the registration at this mentionated form.

If the europe sales are destinated to nother companies or professionals, you need to comply with the intra-community Law sales. These sales will be exempt from VAT if the buyers are registered in VIES and they can prove the goods is being transported from one country to another.

United Kingdom

Attending to sales to United Kingdom, due to the exit of the EU because of Brexit, they are considered exports of goods. They usually are exempt from VAT if it meets certain requirements as having an EORI number and accreditation of goods transport.

 You must have at your disposal:

–  Export and import customs declarations.

– Filing with the UK Inland Revenue of any taxes due on your goods.

-Goods origin declaration

-EU preferential agreement for the non-application of tariffs and quotas.

– Transport document.

–  Goods certificates.

In addition, you need an EORI number from UK and be registered at UK VAT to complete the formalities, or you can do so through a representative at UK customs.

Exports to countries outside Europe

Regarding exports to countries which do not belong to EU, such as China, India, USA, the same rules apply as described above.

In principle, if the requirements of having an EORI number and export SAD document are met, the invoice will be issued exempt from VAT in accordance with article 20 of Law 37/1992, of 28 December, on Value Added Tax. About the EORI number, only one EORI number is available, linked to the NIF of the entity in its country of residence, the rest of the VAT NIFs of the countries in which it is identified are linked to that single EORI of the non-resident entity, i.e., an EORI is not requested for each country except for the UK, which, due to the exit from Europe, has established something like the EORI for this country.

[1] The Window is a form of European VAT management where VAT is collected from the customer’s country of destination and paid jointly in the company’s country of origin. It is no longer necessary to enter the VAT country by country, but from Spain, for example, you enter the VAT from Italy, France, etc.