Germany: VAT on outsourced banking services | KPMG | GLOBAL
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Germany: VAT on outsourced banking services, referral to CJEU

Germany: VAT on outsourced banking services

The BFH in 2018 referred a case to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) concerning whether support services provided to a bank for the purpose of operating ATMs are exempt from value added tax (VAT). The BFH expressed doubts that the ATM services were VAT-exempt, and thus sought clarification in light of a CJEU judgment in a May 2016 case (C-607/14).


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A judgment from the CJEU on this referral would have implications for banks that generally are not entitled to deduct input tax (or can deduct input tax only to a limited extent). The expected cost benefits would be jeopardized if the outsourced services provided to the banks are subject to VAT. It remains for the CJEU to determine to what extent the outsourcing of services can be exempt from VAT.


Other recent VAT developments that may affect businesses in Germany include the following items:

  • Chain transactions—challenges without protection of legitimate expectations (CJEU judgment of 21 February 2018 – case C-628/16 – Kreuzmayr)
  • Travel services—legislative changes needed (CJEU judgment of 8 February 2018 – case C-380/16 – Commission / Germany)
  • Real estate vacancy and input VAT adjustment (CJEU judgment of 28 February 2018 ‒ case C-672/16 – Imofloresmira – Investimentos Imobiliários)


Read a March 2018 report [PDF 297 KB] prepared by the KPMG member firm in Germany

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