Rules of play for digital invoicing

digital invoicing

You are an EU company doing business in the Netherlands. Any purchases you make will be subject to Dutch VAT. The digital invoice specifies the VAT you have to pay. Many companies are eligible for a refund of VAT. There are specific rules for digital invoicing. To be eligible for a VAT refund, you need to make sure that the invoice complies with the invoice requirements for VAT.

Authenticity and integrity of the digital invoice

When filing invoices, the authenticity and integrity of the purchase invoices must be safeguarded. It is a disadvantage for companies that the Dutch Tax Authorities only determine whether filing complies with the Dutch tax regulations during inspections afterwards. As such, it may not be clear upfront whether your VAT administration complies with the regulations.

You can reduce the risk of incorrect filing through a number of methods. If in doubt, you can request the Dutch Tax Authorities to provide certainty in advance on whether the way you file your electronic invoices is correct. Please note that you need to be aware of a number of rules to comply with the Dutch tax regulations.

Digital filing

You have to file invoices in the format in which you have received them. So when you receive a digital invoice, you file a digital invoice. In addition you have to be able to prove that the sender has sent the invoice in the format you have filed it in. In the case of a digital invoice, you also file the email accompanying the invoice. During an inspection, the Dutch Tax Authority must be able to view these details digitally.


  • It is important for foreign companies to comply with the requirements regarding digital invoicing.
  • The authenticity and integrity of the purchase invoices must be safeguarded.
  • It must not be possible to make changes to digitally sent invoices after receipt.
  • Subsequently, the purchase invoices must be filed digitally, together with the covering email or the way in which they were received.
  • If you do not have a correct purchase invoice, deduction of Dutch VAT may be refused when you request a VAT refund by way of the refund procedure.

White paper: Invoice rules

The white paper will provide you with a clear list of all the invoice rules. You can download it free of charge. There are more rules to be eligible for a VAT refund. A correct purchase invoice is a start. The VAT experts can help you in this respect with more information about applying for Dutch VAT refunds. If you would like to receive advise in this respect, please contact us by sending an email to, and we will get in touch with you.

Get your free whitepaper now
Invoicing requirements - white paper February 2017 accon international.pdf
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