Would a customer in Belguim pay vat


I have been awarded a contract to write some software for a Belgium based company. Do I charge them VAT and then declare this on my VAT returns or should I not be charging VAT?

A google search left me confused.

Thanks for any help

Hi @squarechilli

Firstly - I’m not an accountant, so I highly recommend checking with yours to ensure you get this right.

However, the first points to figure out is how you’re supplying the software (as a service or a product), and whether or not they are VAT registered.


Thanks for the reply, my accountant is great for submitting the returns and preparing pay slips etc but I’d be waiting until Christmas for a reply to a question :-/

They are VAT registered which I presume would be in belgium. The software is custom to them, I am writing from scratch and will be installed on their server once complete. So as far as the product is concerned, it would be classed as a digital product I imagine.

No problem. The best thing I can do is point you in the direction of the EU article:

For a ‘Service’ it states:

Selling to businesses
You do not normally charge your customers VAT. Your customers will pay VAT on the services received at the applicable rate in their country (using the reverse charge procedure).
You may still deduct the VAT you yourself have paid on your related expenses (goods/services bought in specifically to supply that service).

Typically, you would tick mark the client’s VAT treatment as VAT Registered in another EC Member State by modifying the client, which also enabled a few more options when it comes to invoicing, like the reverse charge option:

This changes the way VAT is shown slightly differently on the invoice too:

I hope this helps, but please let us know if you have any further questions :slight_smile:

Thank you for the help, much appreciated.

@QFMathew does this actually do the proper reverse charge mechanism for services or will it include the value in box 8 of the VAT return as if it were a supply of goods?

Hi @ian_roberts

The VAT return would include the net value of the sales invoice in box 6 & 8. So some adjustments may be needed before submitting the return itself.

As always, we always recommend downloading the calculations before submitting it to ensure everything is correct.