Acceptance of points as means of partial payments in case of implementation of the loyalty program with aspects of the VAT Act
According to Article 17, paragraph 4, item 1) of the VAT Law, the basis does not include discounts and other price reductions, which are granted to the recipient of goods or services at the time of the sale of goods or services.
In the case of a loyalty program that implies that the obligor does not charge realized points from a third party, acceptance of points as a "means of payment" essentially has the character of granting a discount, because the customer pays a smaller amount for the value of the realized points. Accordingly, the VAT liability should be lower for the amount of VAT included in the value of the realized vouchers, that is, the "value of realized points" should not be included in the VAT base. However, in order to exercise this right, there are, above all, certain technical obstacles.
Namely, consumers can buy goods in sales facilities, the turnover of which is taxed at the general and special rate of VAT. In the case where the value of goods whose turnover is taxed at the general rate of VAT and the value of goods whose turnover is taxed at the special rate of VAT are shown on the same fiscal account, in order to determine the reduction of the tax base, it would be necessary to determine the proportion of the participation of one and other goods in the achieved discount. The essence is that the amount of the realized discount should be distributed among the articles whose turnover is carried out and that the base for VAT is determined in the amount reduced by the achieved discount per article.
An additional problem of a technical nature refers to the case when the buyer has acquired the goods as a whole pay with collected points (if such a possibility exists). In that case, the taxpayer would have the obligation to calculate VAT on the basis determined in accordance with Article 18, paragraph. 1 and 3 of the VAT Act.
From the point of view of tax regulations, it is not necessary to have a decision or resolution. It is common for loyalty program terms to be publicly available.