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BFH rules on requirements for company addresses on invoices
In a decision dated 22 July 2015, the Federal Tax Court (BFH) ruled that merely using a P.O. box on an invoice does not meet the German VAT invoicing requirements and, therefore, VAT taxpayers may not deduct input VAT from invoices that only display the supplier’s P.O. box address.
The BFH clarified that the full address of where the supplier carries out its business activities must be included on the invoice. The court also stated that the same rule applies to the address of the recipient of the supply.
The German tax authorities currently allow an invoice to contain only a P.O. box, and it is unclear whether the authorities will follow the BFH recent decision.
However, to avoid the potential risk that an input VAT deduction refund will be denied, companies should not use P.O. box addresses on invoices.