1. Why am I paying VAT on the conference Registration Fee?
You are paying a Value Added Tax (VAT) on the Congress admission fee because, according to the last amendment of the EU VAT Directive, VAT must be charged in the country hosting the Congress. This Congress takes place in Valencia (Spain) and therefore Spanish VAT must be included in the Registration Fee. SIETAR Europa is legally obliged to charge 21% Spanish VAT on all fees quoted and will have to transfer that VAT collected to the Spanish tax authorities. This implies an additional complexity and extra costs to the Congress organization.
2. I have my own business/company and I come from an EU country different than Spain, why am I not eligible for the VAT reversed rule between EU countries?
The EU VAT Directive establishes that the “place of supply rule” applies for the rights of admission to an event such as the SIETAR Europa Congress. Charges for admission will therefore be liable to Spanish VAT regardless of whether the individual paying the admission is a taxable person or non- taxable person.
You can find more information in this link where it is stated the following:
B2B services in respect of admission to cultural, artistic, sporting, scientific, educational, entertainment and similar events will be taxed at the place where those events actually take place [Article 53 of the VAT Directive ].
B2C services relating to cultural, artistic, sporting, scientific, educational, entertainment and similar activities will be taxed at the place where those activities actually take place [Article 54 of the VAT Directive ].
3. Can VAT be recovered?
In principle the EU VAT refund scheme allows businesses/companies from certain countries to obtain refunds for the VAT they have been charged in an EU country. To this regard, you have to provide all details of your company - name, address, VAT number or Tax ID –to prepare the invoice that will be the formal document you can later use for deduction purposes.
EU businesses/companies are in principle eligible for VAT refund.
EU companies must contact the Tax Administration of their own country for instructions regarding the conditions and process to follow for reclaiming the Spanish VAT. There are also minimum VAT amounts that must be met.
You can download here a document with the contact details (updated April 2014) of the VAT Refund contact points in each EU country.
Business established outside the EU may have the right to recover VAT incurred in one of the 28 Member States if their country of origin has a reciprocity agreement with the specific EU country where VAT has been charged.
The terms and conditions of these reciprocity agreements often change. In order to receive the most up-to-date information about a possible existing agreement between the country where your business is established and Spain, please contact the Tax administration of your country.