Language of document : ECLI:EU:C:2014:2225

Case C‑7/13

Skandia America Corp. (USA), filial Sverige

v

Skatteverket

(Request for a preliminary ruling from the förvaltningsrätten i Stockholm)

(Reference for a preliminary ruling — Common system of value added tax — Directive 2006/112/EC — VAT group — Internal invoicing for services supplied by a main company with its seat in a third country to its branch belonging to a VAT group within a Member State — Whether services supplied are taxable)

Summary — Judgment of the Court (Second Chamber), 17 September 2014

1.        Harmonisation of fiscal legislation — Common system of value added tax — Taxable transactions — Supply of services effected for consideration — Meaning — Services supplied by a main company with its seat in a third country to its branch in a Member State — Branch belonging to a group of persons whom it is possible to regard as a single taxable person for value added tax purposes — Included

(Council Directive 2006/112, Arts 2(1), 9 and 11)

2.        Harmonisation of fiscal legislation — Common system of value added tax — Persons liable to pay the tax — Taxable person purchasing services supplied by a taxable person established in third country — Meaning — Purchaser of services supplied by a main company with its seat in a third country to its branch in a Member State — Branch belonging to a group of persons whom it is possible to regard as a single taxable person for value added tax purposes — Included

(Council Directive 2006/112, Arts 56, 193 and 196)

1.        Articles 2(1), 9 and 11 of Directive 2006/112 on the common system of value added tax must be interpreted as meaning that supplies of services from a main establishment in a third country to its branch in a Member State constitute taxable transactions when the branch belongs to a value added tax group.

Treatment as a single taxable person precludes the members of the group from continuing to submit tax declarations separately and from continuing to be identified, within and outside their group, as individual taxable persons, since the single taxable person alone is authorised to submit such declarations. It follows that, in such a situation, the supplies of services made by a third party to a member of such a group must be considered, for value added tax purposes, to have been made not to that member but to the actual group to which that member belongs.

(see paras 29, 32, operative part 1)

2.        Articles 56, 193 and 196 of Directive 2006/112 on the common system of value added tax must be interpreted as meaning that, in a situation where the main establishment of a company in a third country supplies services for consideration to a branch of that company in a Member State and where the branch belongs to a group of persons whom it is possible to regard as a single taxable person for value added tax purposes in that Member State, that group, as the purchaser of those services, becomes liable for the value added tax payable.

Article 196 of Directive 2006/112 provides that, as an exception to the general rule in Article 193 of that Directive, according to which value added tax is payable in a Member State by a taxable person carrying out a taxable supply of services, value added tax is payable by the taxable person to whom those services are supplied where the services referred to in Article 56 of that directive are supplied by a taxable person which is not established in that Member State.

The supply of those services in such a situation constitutes a taxable transaction, under Article 2(1)(c) of Directive 2006/112, and the group to which the branch receiving those services belongs is deemed, for value added tax purposes, to be the person to whom those services are supplied.

(see paras 34, 35, 37, 38, operative part 2)