Guatemala tax guide for businesses

VAT Rate
Real-Time Reporting
Digital Service Tax
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Tax ID validation
Tax amount calculation
Compliant invoice generator
Real-time transaction reporting

Compliance And Rates

VAT Number Format In Guatemala

Guatemalan VAT number contains seven digits, one dash, and one digit (e.g., 0123456-1).

VAT Rates In Guatemala

The standard VAT rate in Guatemala is 12%, with a reduced rate of 5% for small businesses. Some goods and services are exempt from Guatemalan VAT, such as existential food supplies and education.

  • 12% (Standard) – general regime – Applies to all taxable supplies, with certain exceptions
  • 5% (Reduced) – small taxpayer regime (Regimen de Pequeño Contribuyente)
  • 0% (Zero) – exportations

VAT Payments And Returns In Guatemala

All businesses with Guatemalan VAT number must submit periodic VAT reports.

VAT Returns Frequency In Guatemala

For all companies that operate in Guatemala, VAT returns must be submitted monthly.

Penalties in case of late filings or misdeclarations

In the case of the late filing of VAT returns and payments, the Guatemalan government prescribed the penalties as follows:

  • Omission or alteration of the Tax Identification Number (NIT) will trigger a fine of Q.100 (EUR 12) for each document. The maximum of sanction may not exceed Q.1,000 (EUR 120) per month.
  • Non-submission and late submission of tax statement will trigger a fine of Q.30 (EUR 4) for each day of delay with a maximum sanction of:
  • Q.600 (EUR 72) when the statement must be submitted weekly or monthly
  • Q.1,500.00 (EUR 180) when the statement must be submitted quarterly
  • Q.3,000.00 (EUR 360) when the statement must be submitted annually.
  • Non-compliance with accounting obligations will trigger a fine of Q.5,000 (EUR 600) each time the taxpayer is inspected.
  • Non-compliance with taxation regulations (offer the goods and services without including the corresponding tax) will trigger a penalty of Q.2,000 (EUR 240) each time authorities notice the infraction.

Invoice Requirements

According to articles 29 and 30 of government agreement 5-2013, special invoices, small taxpayer invoices, debit and credit notes issued in Guatemala must have at least the following information:

  • must have an identification “Invoice.”
  • a unique, sequential number of the invoice
  • date of invoice issuance
  • supplier/issuer data (company name, address, tax identification number – TIN)
  • if a business is “panaderia los patitos,” the full name registered in SAT must be displayed on the invoice
  • customer data (address, TIN, and other data if available) if the customer is a business person
  • full description of goods and services provided
  • any discounts if applicable
  • rate and amount of VAT applicable for the category of goods and services provided
  • the invoice total (incl. VAT)
  • authorization issued by SAT
  • authorization number and date of issuance of authorization
  • term of validity
  • the name and tax identification number of the printing company in charge of printing invoices (must be registered)
  • statement message in case of special supplying or tax regimes (general or simplified)

Penalties In Case Of Invoicing Non-Compliance

Failure to issue an invoice will trigger a fine equivalent to the amount of the tax corresponding to the transaction.


Factura electrónica en línea (FEL)

Guatemala introduced Factura electrónica en línea (FEL) as mandatory for all Guatemalan taxpayers.

Factura electrónica en línea (FEL) is the operational model and the rules applicable to the electronic invoicing in the Republic of Guatemala. Factura electrónica en línea (FEL) includes ellectronicaly issuance, transmission, certification and preservation of the invoices and other documents authorized by the Superintendency of Tax Administration (Superintendencia de Administración Tributaria – SAT), which is called Documento Tributario Electrónico (DTE).

In other words, all the management of tax invoicing in Guatemala must be carried out within the Superintendencia de Administración Tributaria (SAT) prior to authorization and issuance of invoice. This is intended to ensure greater control and security in the issuance of documents with tax implications, which must always have online authorization.

The Guatemalan government identified four main subjects in this process:

  1. Seller – issues invoices.
  2. Certifier (Certificator) – entity authorized by the SAT to certify e-invoices issued by the seller/issuer.
  3. Superintendencia de Administración Tributaria (SAT) – verifies and validates electronic invoices.
  4. Buyer – receives invoices.

Real-Time Invoice Reporting

As already mentioned above, all invoices issued in Guatemala must be authorized by Superintendencia de Administración Tributaria (SAT) in real-time.

The process of online real-time authorization is as follows:

  1. the seller issues the electronic invoice in an XML format and sends it automatically to the Certificator (certifier)
  2. the certifier receives, verifies, and authorizes each invoice and automatically sends a certified XML message to the SAT
  3. the SAT verifies and validates electronic invoice and makes them available to the issuer
  4. the issuer (seller) receives the invoice from the certifier and delivers it to the buyer printed, or in PDF, XML

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