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VAT invoice requirements – credit invoice

In case you would like to issue a credit invoice to a client, please note that strict rules have been set for credit invoices.

A credit invoice is a correction of a previously issued invoice. Hence the requirement that needs to be met to make the invoice legal is mentioning the debit invoice number to which the credit invoice relates on the invoice. A small action, nothing big, you could think.

A credit invoice without the related debit invoice number is incorrect

However, most credit invoices are used to give another party a commission or some sort of refund, that is not related to any debit invoice.


A shop where paint is being sold keeps track of its clients and corporate clients receive at the end of the year a bonus. This bonus is paid to these corporate clients in the form of a credit invoice.

Being the corporate client you think this is a nice gesture, but in fact it is not. If you get an audit, the tax office will see money coming in for which no correct invoice has been issued. The penalty for this fault is EUR 4.860 per wrong invoice.

How to solve an incorrect credit invoice situation?

The solution to this practice is easy. You, the corporate client of the paint shop, send to this paint shop your invoice for the identical contains. Then you solved this issue.

The system of paying commission, bonuses etc. in the form of a negative invoice, which is a credit invoice, is no longer a possibility. The correct method is to ask the concerning company to issue an invoice and you dictate the contains of that invoice.

For private individuals receiving a commission or bonus you should investigate if the payment is maybe not a salary payment subject to wage tax and social invoice

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