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Official Gazette

Monday, May 23, 2022

Tax refund under double taxation avoidance agreements

Updated: 09:00’ - 04/02/2022
What documents a dossier for tax refund under a double taxation avoidance agreement or another treaty to which the Socialist Republic of Vietnam is a contracting party must include?

Under Ministry of Finance Circular 80 of 2021 dated September 29, 2021, guiding the Law on Tax Administration, and Government Decree 126 of 2020 guiding the Law on Tax Administration, dossiers for tax refund under double taxation avoidance agreements and other treaties to which the Socialist Republic of Vietnam is a contracting party are specified as follows:

In case of requesting tax refund under a double taxation avoidance agreement, a tax refund dossier must comprise:
  • A written request for tax refund;
  • Documents relevant to the tax refund dossier, including:
- A consularly legalized certificate of residence granted by the host country’s tax authority, clearly indicating the tax year(s) in which the taxpayer is a permanent resident in such country;

- The taxpayer’s self-certified copy of its/his/her economic contract, service provision contract, agency contract, entrustment contract, technology transfer contract or employment contract signed with a Vietnamese organization or individual; certificate of deposit in Vietnam; or certificate of contribution of capital to a Vietnam-based company (depending on the type of the taxpayer’s income in each specific case);

- A written certification by the Vietnamese organization or individual having signed the contract with the taxpayer of the period and actual operation under the contract (except case of tax refund for a foreign transport company);

- A power of attorney, in case the taxpayer authorizes its/his/her lawful representative to carry out procedures for application of the tax agreement. In case the taxpayer authorizes its/his/her lawful representative to carry out procedures for tax refund into the account of another entity, the power of attorney must be consularly legalized (in case the authorization is effected abroad) or notarized (in case the authorization is effected in Vietnam);

- A list of tax payment documents.

In case tax refund is requested in accordance with a treaty, a tax refund dossier must comprise:
  • A written request for tax refund, certified by the agency that has proposed the conclusion of the treaty.
  • Documents relevant to the tax refund dossier, including:
- A copy of the treaty;

- A copy of the contract with the Vietnam party, certified by the foreign party or its/his/her authorized representative;

- A summary of the contract, certified by the foreign party or its/his/her authorized representative and containing information on titles of the contract and its clauses and terms, scope of jobs to be performed under the contract, and tax obligations under the contract;

- A power of attorney, in case the foreign party authorizes a Vietnamese organization or individual to carry out procedures for tax refund under the treaty. In case the foreign party authorizes its/his/her lawful representative procedures for tax refund into the account of another entity, consular legalization (in case the authorization is effected abroad) or notarization (in case the authorization is effected in Vietnam) is required;

- A list of tax payment documents.

Provincial-level Tax Departments will receive and process tax refund dossiers of taxpayers they are directly managing and taxpayers directly managed by district-level Tax Branches.

Particularly, the directors of the Tax Departments of Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, and Binh Duong and Dong Nai provinces may assign district-level Tax Branches to receive value-added tax refund dossiers of taxpayers directly managed by such Tax Branches and process tax refund dossiers of taxpayers, covering: classification of tax refund dossiers into those eligible for tax refund before inspection and those eligible for tax refund after inspection; determination of refundable tax amounts; determination of tax arrears and late-payment fine amounts to be cleared against refundable tax amounts; drafting of a tax refund decision or a tax refund-cum-state budget revenue clearing decision or a notice of tax refund refusal (if any), then district-level Tax Branches shall forward whole dossiers to provincial-level Tax Departments for further making of tax refunds.

Provincial-level Tax Departments where taxpayers make value-added tax declarations for their investment projects will receive and process tax refund dossiers for such taxpayers’ investment projects.

Tax authorities directly managing taxpayers will receive and process dossiers for refund of input value-added tax amounts not yet fully credited upon the ownership transfer, transformation, merger, consolidation, division, separation, dissolution, bankruptcy or termination of operation of taxpayers.

How can tax refund dossiers be submitted?

As per the aforesaid Circular, a taxpayer may choose to submit its/his/her tax refund dossier in the electronic or paper form.

If wishing to submit its/his/her tax refund dossier in the electronic form, a taxpayer shall send it via the Portal of the General Department of Taxation or another portal under regulations on e-transactions in the taxation field.

Within three working days from the date stated in the notice of receipt of tax refund request dossier, a tax authority will process the tax refund dossier and notify acceptance thereof or tax refund refusal in case the dossier-submitting taxpayer is ineligible for tax refund via the Portal of the General Department of Taxation or another portal via which the tax refund dossier has been submitted.

If wishing to submit its/his/her tax refund dossier in the paper form, a taxpayer will hand-deliver it to the tax authority. A tax officer will examine the validity and completeness of the dossier. In case the dossier is incomplete, the tax officer will request the taxpayer to complete it under regulations. In case the dossier is complete, the tax officer will send a notice of acceptance of the dossier to the taxpayer and make an entry in the dossier receipt book on the tax administration application system.

If the taxpayer sends its/his/her dossier by post, a tax officer will append a seal showing the date of receipt on the dossier and make an entry in the dossier receipt book on the administration application system.

Within three working days after receiving a tax refund request dossier, the tax office shall send a notice of acceptance of such dossier or notify the dossier’s invalidity, for dossiers sent by post, or notify tax refund refusal in case the taxpayer is ineligible for tax refund.-
 

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