EU VAT number formats
Once a company has received approval for an VAT number, see our EU VAT Number Registration briefing, it will receive a VAT number.
Each EU member country has a slightly different format for their VAT number system, featuring a variation of numbers and letters. It is important that companies take close care in using the correct format as the numbers are frequently checked against the VIES system, and errors may create delays or even fines. Country codes, two letters, are inserted before the VAT number if the company is using the number for the purposes of intra-community trade.
Below is a summary of the standard formats for each EU country.
EU VAT Number Formats
Vat Number formats
|Austria||at||U12345678||9 characters||9 characters the first character is always a ‘U’|
|Belgium||be||1234567890||10 characters||Prefix with zero ‘0’ if the customer provides a 9 digit VAT number|
|Bulgaria||bg||123456789, 1234567890||9 or 10 characters|
|Cyprus||cy||12345678X||9 characters The last character must always be a letter|
|Czech Republic||cz||12345678 123456789 1234567890||8, 9 or 10 characters If more than 10 characters are provided delete the first 3|
|France||fr||12345678901 X1234567890 1X123456789 XX123456789||11 characters May include alphabetical characters (any except O or I) as first or second or first and second characters.|
|Ireland||ie||1234567WA (companies) 1234567FA (individuals)||8 or 9 characters Includes one or two alphabetical characters (last, or second and last, or last 2)|
|Lithuania||lt||123456789 123456789012||9 or 12 characters|
|Netherlands||nl||123456789B01 or 123456789BO2||12 characters The 10th character is always B||Companies forming a VAT Group have the suffix BO2|
|Norway||123456789MVA||9 digits and the letters 'MVA' to indicate VAT registration||Last (ninth) digit is a MOD11 checksum digit.|
|Spain||es||X12345678 12345678X X1234567X||9 characters Includes 1 or 2 alphabetical characters (first or last or first and last)|
|Switzerland||che||123.456.789||9 numbers plus MWST/TVA/IVA||German part: MWST
French part: TVA
Italian part: IVA
|United Kingdom||uk||123456789||9 characters|