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Aircraft VAT / import VAT (merged thread)

That C88 form would be issued by the UK tax office if the import took place in the UK I presume. I don’t think it can be obtained on an import that took place elsewhere.

So one has some form from whichever EU country in its own language with some stuff written on it, but there is no way to verify that it will hold up?

If they stop you in Germany, the aircraft will be impounded until you pay 19% VAT. If the same happens in Greece, it will be 25% VAT. What stops a EU country in desperate need for money to just say “I don’t accept no Danish form, give me 25%”? Italy has acted like that in the past. 7 years later with a EU court verdict you can then return to the apron and pay 1m€ parking fees to get to your aircraft?

I know it’s not that bad but I think there is a lack of clarity. How would an officer in country X verify that this Danish form is actually a confirmation of EU VAT paid and that it is not photoshopped?

Made in EU or not should not play any role because it would have to be exported first if it was made in the EU — otherwise there would be no point in the Danish import route and it would not have been possible to obtain the form.

Germany’s attack on OPMAS was apparently limited to a specific construction that involved Röder Präzision in Egelsbach. The “normal” 0% imports via Denmark are not under attack. Obviously Germany does not have ultimate jurisdiction over this as it is 100% Community law.

A good does not lose its “in free circulation” status by being exported. Only after a certain timestamp (I believe 10 years) it loses the status. However, let’s say it was never officially exported and continued to be operated in Europe on a regular basis.

I have some old notes here which were checked by a well known VAT consultant.

I don’t believe you can get a C88 for an EU made aircraft, FWIW. I don’t know of anybody who has got a C88 for e.g. a Socata. What you can get is the Cert of FC.

The validity of the cert should be possible to check via the issuing agency.

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Just to make it more complicated – in your particular case, it might be that the aircraft was re-exported to the US and then re-imported to the EU. This will depend on the time it spent in the US; if that is the case the VAT to worry about some the one on you importing it into the EU again…

Bases in the US and occasional trips to Europe certainly sound like it.

Biggin Hill

Cobalt wrote:

Just to make it more complicated – in your particular case, it might be that the aircraft was re-exported to the US and then re-imported to the EU. This will depend on the time it spent in the US; if that is the case the VAT to worry about some the one on you importing it into the EU again…

Bases in the US and occasional trips to Europe certainly sound like it.

If it it has had the same beneficial owner (ie the Delaware Inc is not a trust) for the whole time then it may not have been exported for VAT purposes. That usually requires a positive action and would only be done for a VAT registered company that has reclaimed the VAT and wants to prove it has been exported usually for sale outside the EU. I think it is next to impossible to diligence that issue except by asking the owner to rep that they have never exported it for tax purposes outside the EU.

EGTK Oxford

It may be worth bearing in mind (particularly regarding the OP aircraft imported in 2006) that most countries don’t require VAT records to be kept for more than six years.

Last Edited by Jacko at 28 Oct 20:26
Glenswinton, SW Scotland, United Kingdom

Where is the burden of proof?

Can’t the tax office of whichever EU country (hint: some of them are in dire need of money) just say: this is an N-reg aircraft, it needs to pay VAT because it’s now here in Europe. Pay or convince us that you don’t have to.

The French airport police are known to work with extortion — impound the aircraft until money is paid and then give the person a chance to go to court. This might be OK in France but what about Italy, Greece or another other country where the legal system doesn’t really work?

I asked two french customs offices 4 months ago, and they said that with the IM4 it’s OK.

Caen LFRK, France

The French airport police are known to work with extortion — impound the aircraft until money is paid and then give the person a chance to go to court.

This is somewhat exaggerated. The previous owner of my aircraft which was imported through the Danish route in 2009 (?) did at some point receive a claim for VAT that he contested. A while later he received a letter from the ministry of finance saying that he did not owe any VAT. End of story. I insisted on keeping the letter of course.

Last Edited by at 28 Oct 21:02
LFPT, LFPN

In a modern country with a functioning justice system, the tax authority works within certain rules. In the UK it is basically 6 years, IIRC counted from the latest date the tax return for the tax year in question was due. Germany will have some similar rule I am sure, otherwise the whole country would he held hostage by the taxman.

However as I wrote earlier there are two separate scenarios involved.

And pretty obviously if you get picked up at some airport, many miles from your home, at a country whose language you may not speak, you will be in a poor position to argue. When I used to go to Spain (the Canary Islands) in the 1980s (windsurfing holidays) the tour operator made it extremely clear that if you needed to report something to the police, make absolutely sure you have a Spanish speaker with you. Well, that’s obvious, but there are still differences between even “modern” countries in how on the spot fines are implemented. Read further back up this thread…

I have merged this new thread with the other “N-reg VAT” thread.

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom
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