The E-invoicing Checklist: content tax requirements [part 5]

In this fifth part of our series on the E-invoicing Checklist we will take a look at what information must be part of an invoice.

If you issue an invoice to your customer, you will need to make sure that your invoice meets the legal requirements. If it doesn’t, it is possible that your customer is not entitled to deduct VAT. You can also get in trouble during a tax audit. And you don’t want that, do you?

Your invoice should contain the following information:

Your VAT number

This is the number your organisation is registered under the tax authority’s database.

Invoice Number

Invoices must be numbered consecutive, if necessary in multiple series.

Date the product or service was delivered

Alternatively: date of purchase, period to which the invoice applies.

When payments are made in advance

The date of the payment, when different from the invoice date.

The VAT number of your customer

This only goes for Intra Community Supplies, when services are performed in another EU Member State and when a “Reverse VAT charge” mechanism applies.

IBAN/SEPA number

Only for international deliveries, allowing your international customer to actually pay your invoice.


Only for international deliveries, allowing your international customer to actually pay your invoice.

Invoice date/ date of creation

Your name and address

Name and address of your customer

Quantity and type of the delivered product(s)

Size and type of service(s) provided


Price excluding VAT

Any discounts

Applicable VAT rate

Amount of the VAT

Total amount to be paid

Legal Entity Identifier

These come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, e.g. a Chamber of Commerce number.


The tax authorities in your country can regard any document that includes the mandatory data mentioned above as an invoice, irrespective of the title or name of that document (notes, certificates, declarations, receipts or vouchers) and regardless of its destination or purpose. Any document that can be regarded as an invoice and that does not meet the legal requirements, must be adapted to meet these requirements.

It may be possible that for supplies or services that you’ve delivered, you issue an “invoice-like” document (vouchers, receipt) that don’t meet the legal requirements. You can solve this by periodically (weekly/monthly/yearly) sending a monthly/annual invoice statement with the correct details. Make a reference to the vouchers/receipts in this document. The invoice statement must contain all of the required data together with the vouchers, receipts, and
so on.

It should also be mentioned on the invoice if a special scheme is applied. Examples of special EU schemes are: application of the margin scheme in trade in used goods; application of a reverse charge mechanism; VAT exemption, or intra-community supply (ICS).

Extensive VAT information by the European Union:

E-invoicing Compliance Guidelines:

Interactive matrix:


Previously published articles in this series:
New series: The E-invoicing Checklist [part 1]
The E-invoicing Checklist: Manual [part 2]
The E-invoicing Checklist: Current EU e-invoicing basics [part 3]
The E-invoicing Checklist: The new EU E-invoicing Directive [part 4]

Related Posts

Comments are closed.