Effective January 1, 2021, Italy introduced new mandatory e-invoicing requirements for retailers. Certain technical processes under the e-invoicing rules concern new technical specifications for e-invoicing via the Sistema di Interscambio (SdI) and amendments to the “document type” and “nature” codes for the XML file.

On May 26, 2021, the governments of Italy and San Marino agreed to introduce in two phases e-invoicing for transactions between the two countries. The first phase will be voluntarily effective October 1, 2021. The second phase will require the mandatory issuance of e-invoices effective July 1, 2022.

On July 7, 2021, the Italian tax authority (Agenzia delle Entrate) published an updated e-invoicing (fatture elettroniche) guide and related technical specifications. The updated guide includes new validations and codes, which have been introduced under the “non-mandatory” fields;

On September 13, 2021, Italy launched a pilot program for pre-filling VAT returns, which enables companies to view their quarterly VAT returns on the Italian tax authority portal. The VAT returns are pre-filled based on e-invoicing data gathered beginning July 1, 2021. The Italian tax authority plans to provide complete annual returns starting in 2023 based on e-invoicing data gathered during 2022.

On November 3, 2021, Italy published Protocol No. 298662/2021, which postpones the deadline for qualifying taxpayers and their representatives to join the ITA's online service through which they may examine and download issued and received electronic invoices from September 30, 2021, to December 31, 2021.

On October 28, 2021, the Italian tax authority published Provvedimento 293390/2021, which among other things, establishes new requirements for the declaration of intent (“dichiarazione d’intento”) effective January 1, 2022. The requirements apply to companies that have to issue electronic invoices for tax-exempt operations through “dichiarazione d’intento.” This declaration is normally created by regular exporters that want to buy or import without VAT. Provvedimento 293390/2021 mandates suppliers to populate the “Altri Dati Gestionali” indicating:

  • In the field “Tipo Dato” the words “INTENTO”
  • In the field “Riferimento Testo” the protocol number

The Italian Digitalization Agency (AGID) recently published guidelines regarding the creation and storage of electronic documents, including e-invoices, effective January 1, 2022 (originally June 7, 2021). The guidelines include a suggested structure for the storage of mandatory metadata elements, new metadata elements, and updates to the fields’ descriptions for metadata.

On December 15, 2021, Italy converted into law Decree no. 146, which, among other things, postpones the planned repeal of the current Esterometro report from January 1, 2022, to July 1, 2022.

To replace the Esterometroreport, Italy will extend the Sistema Di Interscambio (SdI) e-invoicing system to cross-border transactions conducted by entities established in Italy with non-Italian customers or vendors. Taxpayers in Italy will have to issue e-invoices through the SdI system for the following transactions:

  • Accounts receivable transactions performed with non-established customers within the deadline for the issuance of the invoice (i.e., 12th day following the taxable event)
  • Accounts payable transactions performed with non-established vendors by the 15th day of the month following the month when the invoice was received or the taxable event occurred.
  • The penalties for issuing invoices in the wrong format, effective July 1, 2022, will be EUR 2 per invoice up to a maximum of EUR 400 per month. These penalties may be reduced by 50 percent, up to a maximum of EUR 200 per month, if the transmission is correctly made and/or the data is corrected within 15 days of the deadline.

On December 13, 2021, the European Union approved Italy to extend until December 31, 2024, its derogation from the EU VAT Directive concerning its e-invoicing system. The decision further authorizes Italy to expand the e-invoicing requirement to taxpayers who benefit from the exemption for small enterprises.

The Italian Undersecretary for the Economy recently announced plans to repeal the e-invoicing exemption applicable to lump sum payments in an aim to reduce e-invoicing evasion.

On June 29, published in the Official Gazette, Law 36 ratified the Italian Council of Ministers Draft Decree PNRR 2. This law includes the following:

  • Effective July 1, 2022, e-invoicing will apply to taxpayers who adopt the flat-rate tax regime. A transitional period will be conducted from July 1, 2022, through September 30, 2022, where these taxpayers will be allowed to issue e-invoices within the following month from which the transaction occurred, without penalty.
  • Past September 30, 2022, these taxpayers will become subject to the 12-day e-invoice issuance rule.
  • Effective 2024, taxpayers with annual revenues up to EUR 25,000 will be required to issue and clear e-invoices through the SdI system.

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