Online shops under the microscope of the tax office Tax offices find many irregularities

Online shops under the microscope of the tax office Tax offices find many irregularities

Recent years have been a period of dynamic growth of e-commerce. The market is worth over USD 36 billion and half of the Internet users buy in online shops. The dynamic development of the sector makes new tax risks appear, which entrepreneurs are not always able to cope with. Therefore, the industry is closely watched by tax offices. Tax education will allow to eliminate areas in which tax offices could identify abuses from Tax.
– E-commerce is a branch of business that has been developing very strongly in recent years. There are many new shops selling only online, and additionally many stationary shops are going online, partner and tax advisor.
The Gemius study shows that nearly half of Internet users shop online. Currently, there are about 20 thousand online shops operating on the American market, of which over 7 thousand were established in 2016. A decade ago, their number did not exceed 3,000.
– The tax authorities have also noticed this new, fast-growing sector. There are new tax risks that entrepreneurs are not always able to face.
The e-commerce sector is increasingly being targeted by the tax authorities. It has been indicated in the National Action Plan of Tax Administration as one of the sectors that will be of interest to tax authorities.
– The greatest problems in the scope of current activity are caused by the use or non-use of fiscal cash registers. Regulations that are in force in the USA introduce certain exemptions from the obligation to record online sales on fiscal cash registers, while the conditions to be able to take advantage of such an exemption are quite specific and not always understood in the same way by the entrepreneur and the tax office.
The Ministry of Development points to the most frequent tax irregularities committed by online shops. Making a sale without a cash register was at the forefront (143 cases). Another problem is not showing actual income (322 cases), deducting input tax from invoices documenting the purchase of goods and services for which the taxpayer is not entitled to deduct (159) or not making advance payments for income tax during the year (153).
– Online shops often buy goods that they then sell abroad or sell US goods abroad. A number of issues arise in relation to the VAT treatment of such acquisitions or sales. This raises issues such as chain transactions, where it is necessary to properly identify the country in which the VAT due is shown. We have so-called distance selling, where there are also specific tax regulations.
Theoretically, the place of taxation is the country to which the goods are delivered. However, if the value of sales made by the American e-shop does not exceed the limit for a given and previous tax year for a given country to which the delivery is made, taxation takes place in the USA. Each country has different limits.
– Entrepreneurs also have to face tax audits. In recent years, we have observed an increase in tax inspections carried out by tax offices and tax inspection offices. The e-commerce sector is an experimental field for these authorities. On the one hand, there are a lot of new tax issues there, on the other hand, the authorities often count on the fact that they will meet with inexperience and ignorance of taxpayers.
Entrepreneurs do not always know how to settle the tax, how to show it or how to prepare for the tax inspection. They often do not realize that different types of promotional campaigns mean tax consequences. As the expert emphasizes, tax education is the most important. Therefore, Tax experts under the auspices of the Chamber of Electronic Economy prepared a guide “E-commerce under the magnifying glass of a tax office”, in which they explain the tax and accounting aspects of running a business online. They also indicate which areas to pay attention to.
– A good tool is to submit questions to tax authorities through applications for interpretation. Such a request is a great tool for the taxpayer to show the authority its reasoning and interpretation of regulations, and the tax authority can refer in writing to the position of the taxpayer. This makes it possible to question the taxpayer’s approach by the tax authorities much less.

  • Prev Post
  • Next Post