The software bot that automatically validates value added tax (VAT) identification numbers and provides suggestions for those that are invalid, all using cloud computing technology.

Your challenges

In the current climate of increasing reporting and compliance requirements, companies that perform taxable transactions must be able to demonstrate a high level of control on their tax-related data.

Do you report EU sales and purchases for VAT with multiple customers, co-contractors and suppliers on a pan-European level? Or do you operate a shared service centre to fulfil VAT obligations on a central level? Are you aware of your withholding tax obligations when making payment to your vendors?

You need the right tools in place to assure the accurate and systematic treatment of your tax data and withholding tax obligations.


How we can help

Streamline your VAT processes and improve control of your data with RoboVAT, PwC’s user-friendly cloud computing solution. Our bespoke secure and privacy-compliant tool can bring measurable cost savings and time gains via automation.

RoboVAT 1.0 will help your organisation comply with the 2020 quick fixes to the EU VAT system introduced by the European Council, namely to have valid EU VAT ID numbers on invoices to apply the EU VAT exemption for cross-border supplies.

In case of an invalid VAT ID number, RovoVAT 2.0 will help to provide a suggestion to correct the invalid VAT ID number of your business partner.

If you’re looking to ensure compliance in the case of a supplier who has tax or social security debts, RoboVAT 3.0 is your answer. It’s the only solution that automatically checks in bulk whether there are any withholding tax or social security obligations for Belgian suppliers in the construction, meat and security/surveillance sectors. If a (sub)contractor has tax debts with the Belgian Tax authorities, companies and self-employed persons have a legal obligation to pay 15% of the invoice amount (excluding VAT) to the government. And in the case of social debts to the Department of Social Security there’s a legal obligation to pay 35% of the invoice amount (excluding VAT) to the government.


RoboVAT: automating VAT tasks

Uploading VAT ID numbers

RoboVAT uploads VAT ID numbers based on a fixed template on a Google Cloud and performs an automated pre-check of the VAT ID number format.

Verifying VAT ID numbers

RoboVAT 2.0 verifies the VAT ID numbers (master or transactional data) of customers and/or suppliers. These are pre-validated by the Google Cloud via a call-out to the VAT Information Exchange System (VIES) website of the European Commission. In case of an invalid VAT ID number, RoboVAT 2.0 provides a suggestion to correct the invalid VAT ID number of your business partner.

As of 1 of January 2021, the VIES website can be used to check the XI VAT numbers whereas GB VAT numbers can no longer be verified. As a valid EU VAT number of your client is a substantive condition to apply the exemption for intra-Community supplies the verification of those XI VAT numbers becomes key. We have updated our RoboVAT tool to validate these XI VAT numbers in bulk as well.

Creating reports

The tool creates summary and full Microsoft Excel file reports that provide the results of the VAT ID numbers check (valid, invalid and errors), the suggested changes to the data, and sends an email notification on the status of the report to a designated recipient. The results include a reference to the VIES Request Identifier which functions as a unique time stamp indicating the exact timing of the check performed.