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VAT in Austria

VAT Guide for EU countries within Europe

VAT in Austria

Whether you’re a European or non-European company, establishing certain activities in Austria may mean you need to register for VAT. You can use a fiscal representative or tax advisor to draw up your VAT, Intrastat and ESL returns with total peace of mind in Austria.

If you deal with companies in Austria, you may be able to claim a Austrian VAT refund.

Here you can find the specifics of VAT regulations in Austria, which work alongside the harmonised framework of the EU as explained in our guide to intra-Community VAT obligations.

Basic information

EU membership 1995
ISO code AT
VAT introduced in Austria 1973
VAT name in Austria Umsatzsteuer
VAT ID format in Austria ATU99999999
Territories with special status in Austria n/a

VAT rates in Austria

Standard VAT rate 20 %
Reduced VAT rate (1) 13 %
Reduced VAT rate (2) 10 %
Super reduced VAT rate n/a
VAT parking rate 13 %
Zero VAT rate no

Thresholds triggering VAT reporting obligations in Austria

Intrastat threshold at introduction 750 000 EUR
Intrastat threshold on dispatch 750 000 EUR
Distance selling threshold As of 1st July 2021, the threshold is EUR 10,000 for all intra-Community distance sales.

Reporting frequency in Austria

Intrastat declaration Monthly depending on threshold
EC Sales List (ESL) declaration monthly, quarterly
VAT returns monthly, annually
Reporting currency EUR

VAT-related penalties in Austria

Failure to file a VAT return At the discretion of the administration, a penalty of 10% of the VAT due may be imposed for late filing.
Late payment of VAT Penalty of 2% of the amount of VAT due. In case of non-payment after 3 months, additional penalty of 1%. In case of non-payment after 6 months, a new additional penalty of 1%. Beyond that, new fraud penalties may be applied.
Failure to report ESL/DEB Penalty of up to 1% of the amount of the Intra-Community supplies up to a limit of EUR 2,200 per ESL in the case of late filing, and EUR 5,000 in the case of not filing.

Useful links on VAT in Austria

Tax Authorities in Austria Tax authorities
Ministry of Finance in Austria Ministry of Finance
Check a VAT number in Austria Check a VAT number
EU VAT Guide EU VAT Guide
Austria has been a member of the European Union since 1st January 1995 and a member of the Eurozone since 2002.

Partly due to the large number of companies specialising in subcontracting, Austria is essentially a country of small and medium-sized enterprises. The key areas of Austrian industry are the chemical industry, the paper and pulp and paperboard industry, the food industry and above all the metal and mechanical engineering industry.

Austrian value added tax legislation came into force in 1973 and is based on the Turnover Act 1994 (Umsatzsteuergesetz) and the Umsatzsteuerrichtlinien 2000 (2000 guidelines) which transposed the European VAT directives into local law.
Non-resident taxable persons identified for VAT purposes in another Member State who carry out transactions in Austria for which there is no reverse charge mechanism (e.g. domestic supplies and other supplies to private persons) are required to register for VAT.

The current VAT rates in Austria are as follows:

  • Standard VAT rate: 20 %
  • Reduced VAT rate (1): 13 %
  • Reduced VAT rate (2): 10 %
  • Super reduced VAT rate: n/a
  • VAT parking rate: 13 %
  • Zero VAT rate no

Certain transactions in Europe may require registering for VAT and filingVAT returns in Austria:

To check if your activities involve VAT obligations in Austria, use our VAT simulator or contact us.

When do e-traders need to register for VAT in Austria?

In Austria just like in other European Union countries, e-traders must register for VAT:

  • when the overall threshold of EUR 10,000 for Intra-Community distance selling is exceeded and they have not opted to pay the VAT in Austria via the One Stop Shop,
  • or when they hold a stock of goods in Austria and must report the stock supply transactions.

What are the VAT obligations for e-traders in Austria ?

In addition to VAT registration, e-traders must:

  • Apply the defined VAT ratesin Austria: standard rate (20 %), reduced rates 1 and 2 (13 % and 10 %).
  • Declare stock transfers between marketplaces‘ storage platforms, as well as the supply translactions for these stocks.
  • File periodic returns (VAT returns, intrastat, ESL), to ensure their VAT compliance in Austria.

> Learn more about the VAT & e-commerce regulations and the VAT regime for logistics platforms in Europe.

Why identify yourself to VAT in Austria?

You may need a VAT number in Austria to fulfil your tax obligations in this country. Indeed, certain activities such as sales, purchases and subcontracting operations may require VAT identification. To check if your activities require VAT identification in Austria, use our VAT simulator or contact us.

VAT Austrian is named Umsatzsteuerand the VAT numbers in Austria have the following structure: ATU99999999.

How do I get a VAT number in Austria?

The administrations in charge of in Austria VAT are the following: Tax authorities, Ministry of Finance.

Registering for VATis a relatively simple formality compared to setting up a company, but in addition to obtaining a VAT number in Austriayou’ll need to file periodic VAT returns to ensure your VAT compliance. Which is why we recommend foreign companies use a fiscal representative or tax advisor.

Companies with a VAT number in Austria must complete and submit VAT returns in Austria detailing all taxable income (sales) and expenses (costs), with the following periodicity: monthly, annually.

Failure to comply with the deadlines imposed by the Austrian authorities for the deposit and payment of VAT will result in the payment of penalties . For this reason, it is recommended that foreign companies use the services of an agent or a tax representative.

These penalties are defined as follows in Austria:

  • Penalties for failure to file a VAT return in Austria: At the discretion of the administration, a penalty of 10% of the VAT due may be imposed for late filing.
  • Penalties for late payment of VAT in Austria: Penalty of 2% of the amount of VAT due. In case of non-payment after 3 months, additional penalty of 1%. In case of non-payment after 6 months, a new additional penalty of 1%. Beyond that, new fraud penalties may be applied.

In addition to VAT returns, companies may be required to provide the Austrian authorities with Intrastat & EC Sales List returns:

  • Intrastat returns enable the Austrian authorities to compile foreign trade statistics.
    Companies must file these Intrastat returns as soon their turnover reaches the threshold.
    Intrastat threshold at introductio n in Austria (750 000 EUR HT/an)
    – Intrastat threshold on dispatch in Austria (750 000 EUR HT/an).
    Failure to comply with the deadlines imposed by the Austrian authorities for the filing of these Intrastat returns wil incur a penalty payment for the company.
  • The sales summary returns (EC Sales List or ESL) or purchases (EC Purchases List or EPL) in Austria are for tax purposes.
    Failure to comply with the deadlines imposed by the Austrian authorities for the filing of these ESL returns wil incur a penalty payment for the company.

In principle, a non-resident company in Austria can recover all or part of the VAT incurred on its expenses.

There are three different scenarios:

  • The company, whether it is established within the European Union or not, is already registered for VAT in Austria, or is obliged to register for VAT in Austria. In this case, it must apply for a VAT refund via the periodic VAT return filed in Austria, according to a periodicity:monthly, annually.
  • The company is established within the European Union, is not registered for VAT in Austria and is not required to do so. In this case, a VAT refund should be requested via the tax authorities’ electronic portal in the country where the company is established.
  • The company is not established within the European Union and is not required to register for VAT in Austria. In this case, they must use the services of a fiscal representative to carry out what is required by the Austrian authorities on their behalf.
    > Learn more about our VAT recovery services.


*This information is subject to change without notice.

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