France extends electronic audit file to non-resident VAT companies

Sun 16th Nov 2014

France will require all non-resident or foreign French VAT registered companies to prepare and submit their accounting records in a proscribed electronic format for audits commencing after 1 January 2015.  This will place new French GAAP accounting requirements on foreign traders in order for them to submit any files.

The obligation has been in place with resident French companies since the end of 2012. Companies are compelled to issue their files in an accounting entry file (AEF). This includes an Fichier des Ecritures Comptables – Taxe sur la Valeur Ajoutée (FECTVA) file, declaring all sales and purchases previously declared in the French VAT returns. Each entry must include up to 18 data fields based on the decree.

Fines for the presentation of the FECTVA will be 10% of any additional tax assessed, with a minimum penalty of Euro5,000. But a tax inspector may levy a total fine of 100% in the case of obstruction.

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