English translation of Article 45 of the Swiss VAT Act 2010

This page contains an English translation of the below Article of the revised Swiss VATA 2010 and is part of a web based Swiss VATA 2010 commentary published in German. Should you require qualified written legal advice on cross-border transactions potentially triggering Swiss VAT  from a Swiss VAT lawyer please do not hesitate to contact: Harun Can


Article 45 of the Swiss VAT Act 2010 

Liability for reverse charge
  1. The following are subject to the reverse charge:  

    1. the supply of services by businesses with their place of business abroad that are not entered in the Register of Taxable Persons, if the place of supply under Article 8(1) is situated on Swiss territory;
    2. the import of data storage devices without market value with the services and rights included therein (Article 52(2));  
    3. the supply of goods on Swiss territory by businesses with their place of business abroad that are not entered in the Register of Taxable Persons, if this supply of goods is not subject to import tax. 
    4.  
  2. The recipient on Swiss territory of supplies under 45(1) is liable to the tax, provided he:

    1. is liable to the tax under Article 10; or 
    2. in the calendar year is procured with such supplies for more than 10,000 Swiss francs and in the cases of 45(1)(c), has been informed in writing in advance by the competent authority about the liability for reverse charges. 


Article 109 of the Swiss VAT Ordinance 2010 (Supplies not subject to the reverse charge) clarifying Article 45 of the Swiss VAT Act 2010

  1. Goods and services that are exempt without credit from tax under Article 21 of the Swiss VAT Act 2010 or are exempt from tax under Article 23 of the Swiss VAT Act 2010, are not subject to reverse charge.
  2.  
  3. The delivery of electricity and natural gas in pipes or cables under Article 7 Section 2  of the Swiss VAT Act 2010 to persons who are not liable for tax under Article 10 of the Swiss VAT Act 2010 is not subject to a reverse charge, but is subject to domestic tax.

Article 110 of the Swiss VAT Ordinance 2010 (End of the use or exploitation with subsequent delivery of the goods in Switzerland) clarifying Article 45 Section 1 (c) of the Swiss VAT Act 2010

If a good surrendered for use or exploitation that was released for free circulation is not assessed after the end of this use or exploitation directly after the export procedure (Article 61 of the Customs Act dated 18 March 200514), but is delivered to a third person in Switzerland, this person must pay the reverse charge.

 Article 111 of the Swiss VAT Ordinance 2010 (Data storage media without market value) clarifying Article 45 Section 1 (b) and 52 (2) of the Swiss VAT Act 2010

     1. Every device for storing data is considered to be data storage, regardless of the nature of storage, if in the manner and condition in which it is imported:

          a. it cannot be purchased for consideration that is set at the time of import; and
          b. it cannot be used contractually for payment of a non-recurring licence fee set at the time of import.

     2. The data storage medium may contain computer programmes and files, their updates and upgrades, and sound and image data in particular.

     3. Crucial for the assessment of whether a data storage medium is a data storage medium without market value is the medium itself with the services included therein and the related rights, not considering the legal transaction leading to the import.

     4. The following goods in particular are equated to data storage media without market value, provided the goods are handed over or surrendered to the customer as a result of an independent legal transaction:

          a. Plans, drawings and illustrations, in particular by architects, engineers, graphic artists and designers;
          b. Legal opinions of lawyers, reports of experts, translations, research and test results and results of analyses, valuations and similar;
          c. Certificated rights and intellectual property.



Corresponding Article(s) of the EU VAT Directive (Recast) 2006/112/EG

Article 196 of the EU VAT Directive

VAT shall be payable by any taxable person to whom the services referred to in Article 56 are supplied or by any person identified for VAT purposes in the Member State in which the tax is due to whom the services referred to in Articles 44, 47, 50, 53, 54 and 55 are supplied, if the services are supplied by a taxable person not established in that Member State.

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