national XML invoice standard for Austria
Electronic invoicing has been mandatory in Austria since January 1, 2014. Since then, suppliers based in Austria have had to issue invoices in electronic form for all B2G transactions, and federal authorities only accept electronic invoices to be submitted via a company service portal (USP).
This requires the consent of the recipient. A digital signature, which the recipient must acknowledge upon receipt, is also provided to ensure real-time and integrity. However, the electronic signature is not mandatory.
Electronic invoices must be archived for 7 years from the end of the calendar year. If one wants to store them abroad, this is only allowed if one has online access to the invoices.
Already in 2020, it was announced in Austria that the portal e-Rechnung.gv.at will no longer accept e-invoices in the formats ebInterface 4.0, 4.1 and 4.2 as of January 1, 2022. However, companies still have the option to use older versions until December 31, 2021, in order to have enough time to migrate one of the newer versions. It is recommended to upgrade to the 6.0 version, but the easiest way is to use to version 4.3, because this is supported by ebInterface, just like version 6.0.
If the mentioned versions are no longer supported, some functions of them will also be dropped. This means that as of January 1, 2022, invoices in the outdated versions will no longer be
As an alternative to the national standard ebInterface, PEPPOL can also be used to transmit electronic invoices. For this, the invoices must be issued in a UBL format. Especially when sending invoices outside of Austria, PEPPOL is a good choice, since a foreign invoicing party usually does not have an Austrian VAT ID and therefore cannot register with the company service provider. Therefore, it is not possible to transmit invoices via ebInterface.
Generally, two formats are allowed for issuing electronic invoices:
UBL and XML formats are also used as a standard for electronic invoicing in many other countries. This facilitates the global exchange of electronic invoices.
There are different ways in Austria to create and also send an electronic invoice.
It is possible to upload the invoice manually via the system E-RECHNUNG.GV.AT. This option is especially useful if suppliers or companies rarely invoice the public sector.
The other option is to use the same system for the automated exchange of invoices. This option offers two different approaches. Either one uses a web service through which invoices are uploaded to the E-RECHNUNG.GV.AT system. In this case, the corresponding approved formats are also supported. The other option is to use the PEPPOL network instead of a web service. However, here it is possible to create the invoice in PEPPOL-UBL format only. A centralized public PEPPOL Service Metadata Publisher (SMP) is used.
If you want to learn more about web services or e-Invoicing in other countries, feel free to take a look at our website!
The VAT regulations in Austria have been in place since 1994 as part of the Value Added Tax Act. Thus, the VAT system follows the requirements of the European Union, which are laid down in the EU VAT Directives. These also regulate the obligation to register foreign companies for VAT, their VAT declaration obligations and compliance rules.
Accordingly, invoices and accounts must be prepared according to precise rules. These include:
*Rates may differ due to Covid-19
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