Pan-European tax system already with us?

I’ve always billed using my national fiscal number, but now I’ve got some loon telling me that I can’t do that anymore cross-border and that I need a European fiscal number. It would be nice if someone had told us. It doesn’t sound like the kind of thing we’ll get to vote on anyway.

Similar posts


  1. Hell, what do I know? If it carries on like this I may have to go back to drug smuggling.

  2. I think they are asking for your VAT number, but in the “European” format, that is, beggining with two characters as national code (ES for Spain). So if your fiscal number is X1231231J, your VAT number turns into ESX1231231J.

    You can even check your number here:

  3. Ah, now I understand! My problem–or their problem, as I already explained to them–is that in small-business-friendly parts of the EU (eg the UK), you don’t need to register for VAT until you hit a certain level of turnover (I think it’s around €90K in the UK). It is very difficult to explain to other parts of the EU (eg Spain) that being in the single market means having to accept legitimate arrangements like this. Thankyou, I thought I was going madder.

  4. That applies everywhere, but the UK threshold is higher than the German.
    VAT may be an advantage. Depends how many customers you have who can’t set the VAT off, and how many business expenses you can set off the VAT on.
    But some people don’t understand that not everyone in business isn’t registered for VAT.
    On top of that, if a British translator does something for me (I once had a chunk of technical stuff translated in Scotland), and she isn’t registered, I have to both claim and charge the VAT. It’s a bit confusing.

  5. The mess is, of course, part of a secret plot to make us all long for European tax integration.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *