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Will electronic invoicing benefit contractor accountants?

Will electronic invoicing benefit contractor accountants?

Contractor accountants and small businesses could benefit from a new invoicing directive from the Council of the European Union.

The new system, which will simplify VAT invoicing processes, must be in place by 2013. At that time, tax authorities must accept and handle electronic invoices in the same way as the current paper documentation.

Electronic invoicing experts at Deloitte welcomed the announcement saying that computerised financial systems already store invoice documentation securely and so it makes sense to acknowledge the new technology is secure when it comes to tax audits. However, they would prefer to see the directive implemented before 2013 if possible.

The UK and the Netherlands already have a system whereby companies can make arrangements to make sure all the necessary procedures have been followed in order to produce a correct tax return.

The directive also contains anti-fraud measures and deadlines for the issuance of invoices which are aimed at speeding up the exchange of data on intra-EU supplies of goods and services.

The European Union will also need to provide new standardised instructions regarding the archiving of accounting documents. Currently, UK companies and limited company contractors must retain e-documents for at least 6 years but other member states have different retention requirements.

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Image: 088.365 – March 29, 2010 by meddygarnet

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