Do you run a business in the Netherlands or do you run a foreign company with a Dutch branch? You may have to pay turnover tax (VAT) in the Netherlands. This also applies if your company is established abroad, but does business in the Netherlands. In all cases, you need a VAT identification number (btw-identificatienummer or btw-id).
Receiving a VAT identification number (btw-id)
If you set up a business in the Netherlands, you must have it registered in the Dutch Business Register of the Netherlands Chamber of Commerce (KVK). KVK will then send your details to the Dutch Tax and Customs Administration (Belastingdienst). You do not have to register with the tax administration separately. The Tax Administration will issue your VAT identification number by post within 10 days. If you have registered without providing all relevant details, the Tax Administration will first assess if you are an entrepreneur for the purposes of VAT.
Is your company established abroad and does it provide services in the Netherlands or supply goods to Dutch-based companies? Then you need to register directly with the Dutch Tax and Customs Administration.
VAT identification number and VAT tax number
All Dutch private individual businesses have a VAT identification number (btw-id) and a VAT tax number (omzetbelastingnummer). The VAT ID is composed like this: country code NL, 9 digits, the letter 'B' and 2 check digits. The 9 digits are not related to your citizen service number and the 2 check digits are random. The VAT ID will then look like this for example: NL000099998B57.
The VAT tax number (turnover tax number) consists of either the Legal Entities and Partnerships Information Number (RSIN), or your Citizen Service Number (BSN), followed by a code of 3 characters between B01 and B99. It looks like this example: 123456789B01. This is the number you use in all correspondence with the Tax Administration.
Displaying your VAT ID
Your invoices must clearly display your VAT identification number (btw-id). If you offer services or sell products via a website, you must also display your VAT ID number on the website (in Dutch). EU businesses also have to state the VAT identification number of their Dutch clients on their invoices. EU businesses must also state the VAT identification number in the recapitulative statement for goods and services supplied.
Finding out a company's VAT ID
There is no website or database where you can look up all VAT number in the Netherlands. If you want to find out a company's VAT identification number, you should contact that company in order to receive this number directly from them. You can also look it up on their website.
You can find your own VAT identification number in the Tax Administration’s online portal for entrepreneurs.
Checking validity of clients' VAT ID numbers
If you want to verify the validity of your client's VAT identification number, you can use the European Commission's VIES VAT number validation (VAT Information Exchange System, VIES). This way you can verify that your client is in fact an entrepreneur.
You can check the VAT number of clients who supplied you with their VAT number and have their registered office in another EU country in VIES. With VIES, you can also check names and addresses of clients from most Member States.
Deregistering your VAT number
If you deregister your company with KVK, deregistration with the Tax Administration database follows automatically. Your VAT number(s) will then be deregistered. You will receive a written confirmation of your deregistration.