A VAT return is required from VAT-liable entrepreneurs for each accounting period. We will tell you how and when a VAT return must be filed, who it applies to and how it affects light entrepreneurs.
What is a VAT return?
A VAT return is a declaration to the Tax Administration regarding business operations subject to value added tax. With the declaration, a VAT-registered person notifies the Tax Administration of the amount of sales and purchases subject to value added tax that took place during the tax period.
Please note that a VAT return must always be filed, even if no VAT-liable business operations took place in the relevant tax period. If you are registered for VAT, the declaration must always be filed by the deadline.
How is a VAT return filed?
A VAT return is mainly filed electronically in the Tax Administration’s online service MyTax. It is the same service portal that you can use to manage your tax matters.
Today, a VAT return is almost always filed electronically, and paper forms are only used in exceptional cases. Instead of MyTax, it is also possible to file a VAT return through the Tax Administration’s interface or the ilmoitin.fi service.
When must a VAT return be filed?
A VAT return must be filed on the 12th day of the second month following the end of the tax period. If your tax period ends in June, you must file and pay the VAT return no later than 12 August.
No additional time can be granted for filing the VAT return, so you must always file your returns on time. If a VAT-liable entrepreneur forgets to file a VAT return, a late penalty charge will be charged. Late payment results in significant late payment interest.
If the amount of purchases subject to VAT exceeds the amount of sales subject to VAT during a tax period, the VAT payable for the tax period may also be negative. In this case, you will not have to pay VAT. Instead, you will get a refund of the VAT you paid on purchases.
Who must file a VAT return?
Any entrepreneur can join the VAT register voluntarily when starting a business, but businesses whose turnover in the accounting period exceeds EUR 15,000 are obliged to join. This does not apply to businesses engaged in VAT-exempt operations, which include health and medical services as well as financial and insurance services, among many other sectors.
Does a light entrepreneur have to file a VAT return?
Light entrepreneurs are not liable for VAT, and they do not have to file VAT return, but they must collect VAT from their customers.
This is because light entrepreneurs do not have their own business ID. The invoices of all light entrepreneurs invoicing through the same light entrepreneur service are added together as the sales of the service, for which the light entrepreneur service has to pay VAT. Therefore, light entrepreneurs must add VAT to all their prices, even if their annual sales do not exceed the turnover limit of EUR 15,000.
Because light entrepreneurs do not have a business ID, they are also unable to make VAT deductions for their purchases and are not liable for VAT in the eyes of the tax authorities.
However, light entrepreneurship saves you a lot of time because you don’t have to worry about filing or remembering VAT returns and payments yourself. Eezy takes care of these for you. This way, you save a lot of valuable working time each year, and you can focus on selling your expertise.
Light entrepreneur and VAT returns
- Light entrepreneurs do not have to file a VAT return.
- VAT-liable entrepreneurs must file a VAT return and pay VAT for each tax period.
- The VAT return must be filed and paid by the 12th day of the second month following the tax period.
- A VAT return must be filed even if no business operations occurred.