COUNTRY GUIDES / Netherlands

Netherlands tax guide for businesses

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Compliance And Rates

VAT Number Format In Netherlands

All EU member states have a fixed format for their VAT numbers. In the Netherlands, it includes the prefix NL, 9 digits, then letter B and then 2-digit company index (e.g., NL012345678B01).

VAT Rates In Netherlands

The standard VAT rate in the Netherlands is 21%, with a reduced rate of 9% on certain goods and services. Some services are exempt from the Dutch VAT, such as education, health care, childcare, insurance, and banking services.

  • 21% (Standard) – Applies to all taxable supplies, with certain exceptions
  • 9% (Reduced) – Food and drink, agricultural products and services, medicines, books, daily newspapers, and magazines
  • 0% (Zero) – exportations and international transport

VAT Payments And Returns In Netherlands

All businesses with a Dutch VAT number must submit periodic VAT reports and payments.

VAT Returns Frequency In Netherlands

For all companies that operate in the Netherlands, VAT returns must be submitted monthly, quarterly, or annually, depending on the amount of VAT that the business entity must pay.

  • Monthly – Last day of the month following the taxation period (i.e., for January, the deadline is 31st March)
  • Quarterly – Last day of the month following the taxation period (i.e., for Q1, the deadline is 31st May)
  • Annually – Last day of the Q1 (i.e., for 2019, the deadline is 31st March)

Penalties in case of late filings or misdeclarations

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

  • For non-payment, late or insufficient payment of VAT, the tax authorities can impose a penalty of a maximum of EUR 5,278 (for ‘careless’ errors) and a maximum of 100% of the VAT due (for fraud).

If a VAT return is not submitted within the legal deadline, the tax authorities may impose a penalty with a maximum of EUR 131.

Invoice Requirements in the Netherlands

Invoices issued in the Netherlands must contain the following information:

  • supplier data (company name, address)
  • customer data (address and other data if available)
  • a unique number of the invoice
  • date of issuance
  • shipping/delivery date
  • full description of goods and services provided
  • net price per unit
  • rate and amount of VAT applicable for the category of goods and services provided
  • the date of payment if it differs from the invoice date
  • the VAT amount
  • the invoice total

Penalties for non-compliance with invoicing

In case of failure to comply with various invoicing obligations, the tax authorities may impose a penalty with a maximum of EUR 5,278.)

E-Invoicing in the Netherlands

From 2017, all suppliers billing the Government will be obliged to submit their invoices electronically.

For B2B and B2C transactions, issuance of invoices electronically is permitted, but still not mandatory.

Tax Control in Netherlands

Tax Control With An XML Auditfile Financieel in Netherlands

Every entrepreneur that operates in the Netherlands has to deal with an annual audit by the Dutch Tax Authorities.

The Tax and Customs Administration (Belastingdienst) has developed an XML Audit file for this purpose, which contains most of the data necessary for the audit. The XML Auditfile Financieel has been developed in collaboration with SRA, software suppliers, and the tax authorities. The XML audit file is currently supported by most accounting packages in the Netherlands.

Date updated [May 12, 2021]

Netherlands tax guide for businesses

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