Advocaten / Avocats / Lawyers

Thursday, 09 April 2020

Do I already have to pay VAT on gift vouchers and other vouchers/coupons?

Gift vouchers and other coupons that can be redeemed as a full or partial consideration for the supply of a good or service may qualify as a "voucher" under the applicable VAT regulations. This requires that the voucher at least states the goods or services to be supplied and the identity of the supplier.

The issuance of vouchers is subject to specific VAT rules. A distinction needs to be made between single-purpose vouchers on the one hand and multi-purpose vouchers on the other hand.

In case of a single-purpose voucher, it is clear at the time of issuance of the voucher in which country the voucher will be used and what VAT rate will apply to the underlying supply/service. In such a case, VAT will become immediately due at the time of issuance of the voucher, as well as on any resale of the voucher. On the other hand, no VAT will become due at the time the voucher is exchanged for the supply of the good or service. An example is a voucher that can only be used in Belgium for the purchase of wine.

In case of a voucher for multiple use, the country in which the voucher will be used and/or the applicable VAT rate is not known at the time the voucher is issued. Therefore, no VAT is due on this voucher at the time of issuance and further resale of the voucher. VAT will only become due at the time of redemption of the voucher, i.e. once the VAT treatment has been determined. Hence, in case this voucher is never used, VAT will never become due. An example of a voucher for multiple use is a voucher that entitles you to a hotel stay in Belgium or the Netherlands.

Attention: discount coupons, which only offer a monetary advantage when purchasing goods or services, are not covered by the VAT regulations on vouchers. They follow a different VAT treatment.

If you have any questions on this subject, please contact the authors of this article or via covid19@tiberghien.com.

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