Persons registered to file Swiss VAT or their fiscal representatives have been able to file their VAT returns electronically since 8 September 2015 voluntarily. However, according to the statistic of the Swiss Federal Administration, even at the beginning of 2020 still around 50% of them submitted the VAT return on bar-coded paper forms. This paper-based submission practice will disappear in the next couple of months.
Already in June 2019, the Swiss Federal Tax Administration announced that the electronic VAT return filing would become the new standard. The end of the paper-based submission is now finally happening as the last VAT return which can be submitted on paper is that of Q3/2020. After this, i.e. as of Q4/2020, it will be mandatory to file your VAT return electronically.
From 1 January 2021 on, the following two options will be available:
- SuisseTax platform (“ESTV SuisseTax”)
This tool has already been available since 2015. On top of the regularly filing VAT, it allows taxpayers to track all processes in a personal overview, to correct historical VAT returns, apply for deadline extension and benefit from the embedded automated tax calculation function. The tool also sends automatic reminders to the registered user on the upcoming VAT return filing deadline.
- VAT return easy
This is a new tool which will be available to taxpayers as of 1 January 2021, however as stated on the website of the Swiss Federal Tax Administration the introduction of it may be delayed due to COVID-19.
The most important difference between ESTV SuisseTax and VAT return easy is that the latter does not require a registration. However, compared to ESTV SuisseTax, it also provides fewer features for taxpayers. For example, with the VAT return easy it is not possible to correct past returns, extend deadline and there is no functionality allowing a direct upload from taxpayers’ ERP system.
In case you are still filing the VAT returns on paper and/or you need help in selecting the appropriate VAT eFiling solution for your organization, please contact us.