How to file
Your VAT Return

How to file your Value-Added Tax return

Dutch companies are obliged to submit their VAT returns to the Dutch tax Authorities, typically on a quarterly basis. But how do you file a VAT return? In this article, we will describe: who has to file a VAT and how you file a VAT return.

Who has to file a VAT return?

When a business is registered (as a ‘resident-company’) at the Chamber of commerce, the VAT number is typically issued automatically (unless there is a reason to believe that the company is not considered a ‘resident company’).

Once the VAT number is issued and activated, the Dutch company must file it’s VAT returns. Some types of businesses are exempt from VAT, this is when the goods delivered or services provided are exempt from VAT, you can think of:


  • Childcare;

  • Hospitals;

  • Education;

  • etc.


When goods sold or services provided are exempt from VAT this mostly means that the company delivering these goods and/or service can't deduct VAT. 


Non-resident businesses may have to file a Dutch VAT return when they are doing business in the Netherlands as well. 

Filing a VAT return

Dutch VAT returns must be filed online. There are three ways of filing a VAT return:


  1. Through the “inloggen voor ondernemers” this website is only available in Dutch;

  2. Through special software for filing returns;

  3. Through a tax representative, INCO can be your tax representative, please contact us for more information.


Filing and Paying the VAT return

It depends when the VAT return needs to be filed. This depends on which period you file your returns (monthly, quarterly or yearly). Be sure to pay the VAT due on time as well. (please see our article regarding this subject for more information when to file and pay).


Usually, the return needs to be filed and paid one month after the ending of the financial period. 


Completing the VAT return

In the VAT return, a business must declare the VAT charged to their customers. They also have to declare the amount of VAT paid to suppliers, because this VAT is deductible. Businesses also declare VAT that has been reversed charge to their business. 


When these amounts are calculated there is either an amount to be paid or an amount to be received.


Please note that as from the first of January 2019, the low VAT rate is 9% instead of 6%.

Correcting the VAT return

When you make a mistake, you can correct this in your next VAT return when the difference is less than € 1.000. When it's more than € 1.000 an additional return is obligated. This is called a “suppletie”. 

Special VAT arrangements

In the Netherlands you can apply for special VAT arrangements, for example:


  • The profit margin arrangement;

  • The travel agency arrangement;

  • The reverse charge arrangement.


Please contact us to find out whether your company is eligible for one or more special VAT arrangements. (please also see our other articles regarding VAT)

INCO Business Toolkit



Our experts have combined their knowledge and strengths to create a tool we call the Business Toolkit. 

The Business Toolkit will help you and entrepreneurs from around the globe to truly understand the Dutch market, regulations and laws. And will enable you to take a deep-dive into the topics displayed below. 

This way you will easily get up to speed with our Company formation process, Dutch Accounting and our corporate services. 

Make sure to check out our handy checklists, explainer video's and extensively written Whitepapers too!