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  #41  
Old 25.08.2019, 21:55
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

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They weren't cheap, and Italian VAT is 22%, but as we were in two, we were under the CHF 300/pp (total was close to CHF 600, so CHF 130 or so in VAT saved!

Tom

I think you'll find that it is Chf 300.-- per person but if it is a single article costing more than Chf 300, either the article is in 2 individual parts with 2 separate invoices but you can't split the cost over 2 or more people on an individual item.


So in your particular case you would be due to pay VAT on entering Switzerland and on entering Italy, legally speaking.
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Old 25.08.2019, 22:01
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

I think only one particular item went to the cousin. So the other parts would have then been taken back into Switzerland a second time!
And in any case, once the correct exporting and importing has been done once, aren't the goods then considered as personal items/used/moving goods and thus no longer subject to import tax?!
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  #43  
Old 25.08.2019, 22:03
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

It seems clear that Tom was cheating the system by claiming back tax that should have been due. Whether it was technically illegal is almost irrelevant - it's clearly taking the piss out of the system, but then I'm not going to judge...

Anyway, what about my question - am I really going to be in trouble if I get the forms stamped (or whatever is required) at the Lorrach office and then turn around to go back to the shop for the refund? As I mentioned, I did this once around 15 years ago, when I'd bought some new motorbike leathers there, with no repurcusions, so in practice, looking at people who've actually done this, do they really make a big deal of crossing the border straight away?
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  #44  
Old 25.08.2019, 22:07
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

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Anyway, what about my question - am I really going to be in trouble if I get the forms stamped (or whatever is required) at the Lorrach office and then turn around to go back to the shop for the refund? As I mentioned, I did this once around 15 years ago, when I'd bought some new motorbike leathers there, with no repurcusions, so in practice, looking at people who've actually done this, do they really make a big deal of crossing the border straight away?
You must exit the EU customs area with the goods immediately after obtaining the stamps, i.e. there and then at that same border crossing. If you don't export the goods immediately you are risking a fine.
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It seems clear that Tom was cheating the system by claiming back tax that should have been due. Whether it was technically illegal is almost irrelevant - it's clearly taking the piss out of the system, but then I'm not going to judge.
What Tom did was technically legal not technically illegal.
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  #45  
Old 26.08.2019, 00:17
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

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What Tom did was technically legal not technically illegal.
Yes, and I don't condemn him for it. We all want to find a way to legally cheat the system, don't we?

I just want to know what are the chances that I'll have a problem if I turn back into Germany to go get my refund or not.
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  #46  
Old 26.08.2019, 07:53
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

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Yes, and I don't condemn him for it. We all want to find a way to legally cheat the system, don't we?

I just want to know what are the chances that I'll have a problem if I turn back into Germany to go get my refund or not.
I think there is a higher chance than there once was as they realised in recent years that more of it was going on. Swiss getting forms stamped for German friends, the stuff never being exported and the VAT being split between them etc. There have been press articles about it.

As mentioned a car immediately turning around right there is likely to attract more attention then say someone with one bag of shopping getting a form stamped in a station and then simply not boarding the train.
In your situation I would personally not risk it. And you've no real reason to do it.

We recently had to do exactly what you need to do. We sourced materials in Bauhaus/OBI Germany (about €600 worth) and of course claimed back the German VAT, but the next day.
And as for the Swiss VAT, well honesty paid off as we had to declare the hired van we were bringing in for the night as well. At a separate customs desk, this was at the big customs point in Thayngen, we also declared the goods and said we think we needed to pay Swiss VAT, after checking the forms, the customs officer stamped them as checked and said we didn't need to pay anything, so this was a big saving and relief for us.

I don't see how Tom cheated the system, as you put it. The items were purchased and exported legally. No VAT was due upon entering CH. And it is his right as a non EU-VAT area resident to claim back EU VAT paid.

One of the items happened to be then for his cousin in Italy so it was taken back there for private use.

It could be a loophole in the law, yes. I am not aware of any prohibition on this practice. I will gladly stand corrected if someone can point to the relevant EU law that does prohibit this however.
Remember this is non-commercial passenger traffic at the border, so quantities involved are not on an industrial scale, so there is no widespread commercial fraud here. (Yet!)
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  #47  
Old 26.08.2019, 09:33
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

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I think you'll find that it is Chf 300.-- per person but if it is a single article costing more than Chf 300, either the article is in 2 individual parts with 2 separate invoices but you can't split the cost over 2 or more people on an individual item.


So in your particular case you would be due to pay VAT on entering Switzerland and on entering Italy, legally speaking.
One item (muffler) was less than CHF 300, and the others (11 sets of brake pads) made the total less than CHF 600.

Perfectly legal.

Tax avoidance is legal. I did the paperwork, and both the Italians and Swiss were happy.

And the Italians do check that what is on the papers is what is in the box, they even verified the number of sets of pads!

Tom
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  #48  
Old 26.08.2019, 09:38
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

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One item (muffler) was less than CHF 300, and the others (11 sets of brake pads) made the total less than CHF 600.

Perfectly legal.

Tax avoidance is legal. I did the paperwork, and both the Italians and Swiss were happy.

And the Italians do check that what is on the papers is what is in the box, they even verified the number of sets of pads!

Tom

Sure, that is perfectly legal Tom and everybody does it, burt this thread is about claiming MWSt back and you were well under the threshold, evidently, so your comments don't really advance this thread as such.


We all know that individuals do not need to declare goods under Chf 300.-- for MWSt
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Old 26.08.2019, 09:40
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

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Sure, that is perfectly legal Tom and everybody does it, burt this thread is about claiming MWSt back and you were well under the threshold, evidently, so your comments don't really advance this thread as such.


We all know that individuals do not need to declare goods under Chf 300.-- for MWSt
But I did declare them, and did get the Italian VAT back, but didn't have to pay any Swiss VAT!

i.e. I was over the lower limit required for reclaiming back Italian VAT (EUR 150 or so), but under the limit for having to pay Swiss VAT.

Tom
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  #50  
Old 26.08.2019, 09:41
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

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Sure, that is perfectly legal Tom and everybody does itt
I don't really think everyone is doing it, as otherwise the entire border regions of Italy and Germany wouldn't be generating any VAT for their country. Some people are doing it as it is both possible and legal.

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I was over the lower limit required for reclaiming back Italian VAT (EUR 150 or so)
Mimimum spend in Italy €154,95 apparently.

https://it.comparis.ch/preisvergleic...ueckerstattung
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  #51  
Old 26.08.2019, 10:08
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

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I don't really think everyone is doing it, as otherwise the entire border regions of Italy and Germany wouldn't be generating any VAT for their country. Some people are doing it as it is both possible and legal.

Mimimum spend in Italy €154,95 apparently.

https://it.comparis.ch/preisvergleic...ueckerstattung

If you have less than Chf 300.-- worth of goods, per person in the car their is no VAT declaration to do for the Swiss as it is under the limit as set by the law
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Old 26.08.2019, 10:09
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

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If you have less than Chf 300.-- worth of goods, per person in the car their is no VAT declaration to do for the Swiss as it is under the limit as set by the law
Yes, fully aware of this. I cross the border daily. The limit is per person per day.
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Old 26.08.2019, 10:18
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

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If you have less than Chf 300.-- worth of goods, per person in the car their is no VAT declaration to do for the Swiss as it is under the limit as set by the law
True, but when they see you go get your papers stamped by the other guys, it's best to show them why.

Tom

Last edited by st2lemans; 26.08.2019 at 16:22.
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Old 26.08.2019, 10:28
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

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True, but when they see you go get you papers stamped by the other guys, it's best to show them why.
Yes, this would be more true of the Italian, French and to some extent Austrian border posts. For Germany though, many entry points are now unmanned on the Swiss side. Moreover, the Swiss wouldn't think anything of someone getting their receipts stamped by the German customs as practically any receipt can be stamped with there being no minimum spend.
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Old 26.08.2019, 14:33
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

I once bought 4 new tyres in Weil am Rhein, drove to the border by Markauft, got the stamp for the german customs, walked over and got a stamp (and paid the duty) at the swiss border, then 'uTurned' and drove back to the garage to get the money. They laughed and said 'that was quick'.. but paid up. I then drove back to the border... I didn't get stopped but I then realised if I had it could have been painful for any number of reasons.

Buy stuff, get the german stamp, (ahem, cough..pay the swiss duty).. drive home, empty the car.. take the stamped receipt back to the vendor at some point soon after.
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Old 26.08.2019, 14:35
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

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'that was quick'
Entirely possible to get the VAT refund the same day. Legally though, the goods must have already been exported.
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Old 26.08.2019, 14:47
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

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You must exit the EU customs area with the goods immediately after obtaining the stamps, i.e. there and then at that same border crossing.
If I would U-turn on the Swiss side of the border... is this acceptable for the "exit" that is needed?
For example, at Thayngen crossing there is a Shell tankstelle (100m from the checkpoint). If I u-turn in this area, is this good enough?
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Old 26.08.2019, 15:46
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

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If I would U-turn on the Swiss side of the border... is this acceptable for the "exit" that is needed?
For example, at Thayngen crossing there is a Shell tankstelle (100m from the checkpoint). If I u-turn in this area, is this good enough?
You must physically exit the EU customs area immediately with the goods. Entering Swiss territory (so including in Thayngen) will mean you have done this and exported the goods immediately as you are legally required to do upon obtaining the stamp(s).
I don't see what you do after you have crossed into the Swiss customs area has to do with it.
You could stop your car and dance naked in the middle of the motorway - the completed export itself would still be legal.
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Old 26.08.2019, 16:23
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

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You must physically exit the EU customs area immediately with the goods. Entering Swiss territory (so including in Thayngen) will mean you have done this and exported the goods immediately as you are legally required to do upon obtaining the stamp(s).
I don't see what you do after you have crossed into the Swiss customs area has to do with it.
You could stop your car and dance naked in the middle of the motorway - the completed export itself would still be legal.
I would avoid showing all your meat at the border :P
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Old 26.08.2019, 17:14
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Re: Things to avoid doing when claiming back German MWSt

I think there is a certain minimum distance you have to drive, did i read 20km somewhere ?



Tires and the such like need to be mounted for some reason to get VAT back so i was told but i am not sure if this is true or not
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