EU IOSS registration and intermediary

IOSS registration - How to register?

IOSS registration requires an intermediary for non-EU companies, meaning you simply cannot have an IOSS number without an intermediary. And since the Intermediary is responsible for VAT reporting and even payment of VAT with you, there is bound to be a charge for it. 

With EAS the charges are low due to the added security provided by our own software, including the powerful tax engine and the full automation. Our automation via direct integrations mean you don’t have to manually manage anything, which also reduces our manual workload. And that removes the need to have monthly, or other periodical fees for our services. 

IOSS intermediary - The checklist

Checklist when selecting your IOSS Intermediary: 

  • Automations: Do they provide automations or will you have to download, refine and upload the data? 
  • Scalablity: If you change your business model, can they support you? Can they automate more complicated models or will they just register you for the schemes and make your accounting even more laborious? 
  • What are the charges? Most charge periodical, filling and variable fees. 
  • Contract term: Terminations are often punitive, with 3 months standard (nothing to do with regulation) and 1 year not uncommon. Make sure you ware not limited by dodgy service for too long! 
  • Speed: Do they need months to register you or will you have your IOSS up and running immediately? Extensive registration periods are 100% of the time directly correlated to other service efficiencies you need. 

1. Can IOSS be used with B2B?

No, IOSS is purely a B2C scheme. If you find out that your supplier / POD is using IOSS to report their sales to you, run for the hills. They are committing fraud and making you an accomplice. 

Cross-border sales are generally VAT 0% and they are handled very differently in accounting. A very different discussion. 

2. Can I get an IOSS number in UK?

As a UK company you can register for IOSS, but not in UK (Brexit). IOSS is always registered to a EU member state.

To register for IOSS you have to have an EU Intermediary. If you have a company or VAT registration in EU, you can register for IOSS yourself. 

3. IOSS reigstration in UK?

You have to have an EU Intermediary or company in EU and register yourself to have an IOSS number.

EAS acts as an IOSS intermediary. Register here for EAS pay-as-you-go IOSS service

4. How long does it take get an IOSS number?

With EAS you get your own IOSS in few hours. 

Once you have registered with EAS (register here), the EAS tax team starts the IOSS registration process immediately.

EAS gives you instructions on how to add your IOSS number to your logistics partners.

5. What can I do to make sure IOSS shipments go through as intended?

  1. Make sure your IOSS number is correctly input to your logistics partner, or to your logistics software. Instructions for the most common ones are here:
  2. Make sure all the data is available. Some logistics companies and postal operators refuse IOSS shipments if HS -codes are missing. 
  3. Some data is not automatically transferred in even the more advanced logistics software solutions. Consult your logistics parter / software provider for detailed instructions. 

6. What happens if I don’t pay the Intermediary the VAT they invoice?

At first, the IOSS registration country tax administration will go after your Intermediary for the payment. 

Tax administrations tend to accept easily the Intermediary data as sufficient proof of the sellers liability and the sellers will become liable. 

Seller will be liable for the VAT, fees and collection fees in such instances with added blocking from having an EU IOSS number for some years.

7. What happens if the shipment is over the threshold?

It depends on your e-commerce platform setup. Generally, those shipments are delivered Delivery Duty Unpaid, which means the logistics partner will charge your customer for fees, taxes and duties. In other words, guaranteed to reduce customer satisfaction and increase returns. 

You can also adjust your platform to collect VAT and duties in some instances and provide on Delivery Duty Paid delivery option for those shipments. Requires couriers. You might have to absorb duties, but you reduce returns and increase customer satisfaction. 

Just talk to EAS and we will adjust everything for you. 

8. Is IOSS Intermediary the same as Fiscal Representative?

No. If you have a fiscal representative you don’t have to choose him as an Intermediary. A fiscal representative’s role depends on a country, it is not a uniform role. Generally, they support all VAT issues with varying levels of liabilities. 

Although the IOSS Intermediary role has similar responsibilities to a fiscal representative, there are differences. IOSS Intermediary is jointly and separately liable for the VAT reporting and payment, Fiscal Representative is that in some countries but not all. IOSS Intermediary role is defined in EU regulation, it is the same in all EU countries. IOSS Intermediary exists only in EU. 

9. Can the IOSS Intermediary act as Fiscal Representative?

Yes if they are willing to accept the role. 

10. How long does IOSS registration take?

In digitally advanced countries like Estonia, IOSS registration takes just hours. Some EU countries actually insist on sending the IOSS number by physical mail which can slow the registration significantly.

EAS registers companies for IOSS in Estonia. You will have an IOSS number in hours!

11. How to terminate IOSS number?

Inform your Intermediary you wish to terminate the contract in writing. Mind you, there might be excessive termination periods and / or punitive fees. They are obligated to inform the tax administration of the termination. 

If you wish to continue with another IOSS Intermediary, they can register you immediately. Just make sure you don’t have shipments with two different IOSS numbers crossing borders simultaneously to avoid unnecessary drama. 

12. How long does it take to terminate IOSS number?

IOSS number is valid for 3 months from termination. That does NOT mean you are stuck to an Intermediary for that time, you can have an IOSS number from another Intermediary. 

Duration depends on the efficiency of the Intermediary, with EAS we can have a new IOSS registration on the same day. 

13. How to provide the Intermediary the EU sales data?

We at EAS have created a comprehensive SaaS solution to make sure the data is retrieved from the source, i.e, checkout. That is the only way to have automation for returns and discounts. And to remove manual downloads and uploads. With software, the data is reliable and easy to audit. 

Picture of Teemu Konttinen

Teemu Konttinen

MA in Design Management. Market focused strategist with bids eye view.

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