1. Who is obliged to register for VAT?
UAE-resident businesses who make taxable supplies in the UAE must mandatorily register for VAT, provided the value of their taxable supplies and imports in the last 12 months exceeded, or is expected to exceed in the next 30 days, the mandatory registration threshold of AED375,000. Non-UAE-resident businesses who make taxable supplies in the UAE must also mandatorily register for VAT, regardless of the value of its taxable supplies and imports, where there is no other person obligated to pay the due tax on these supplies in the UAE.
2. Who may register for VAT?
UAE-resident businesses who make taxable supplies in the UAE may voluntarily register for VAT if the value of their taxable supplies and imports, or taxable expenses, incurred in any past period of 12 months or less exceeded, or is expected to exceed in the next 30 days, the voluntary registration threshold of AED187,500.
3. When are businesses supposed to start registering for VAT?
A person required to register for VAT needs to submit a registration application to the FTA within 30 days of reaching the Mandatory threshold). Registration applications will be submitted via the EmaraTax portal.
4. Should I register mandatorily or voluntarily?
(Mandatory registration) You will be required to be registered when the VAT law is in force if you are a business that is resident in the GCC and you are making supplies of goods or services in the UAE and either:
1) Your taxable supplies was more than AED375,000 in in any past period of 12 months or less; or
2) You expect that your taxable supplies will be more than AED375,000 in the next 30 days.
There is no registration threshold for foreign businesses who do not have a Place of Residence in the UAE and are making or expect to make supplies of goods or services in the UAE and there is no other person who is required to account for the VAT due in the UAE on their behalf.
(Voluntary registration) If you are not required to register, you will be eligible to apply for registration when the VAT law is in force if:
1) You expect that either your taxable supplies or expenses were more than AED187,500 in the last 12 months or less; or
2) Your taxable supplies or expenses will be more than AED187,500 in the next 30 days.
5. What type of financial transactions should be included as part of the taxable turnover?
When calculating the taxable turnover figure, you must include the following:
• Taxable supplies
o Standard rated supplies
o Zero-rated supplies
o Deemed supplies
• Imported goods and services
o Do not include the value of exempt supplies
o Do not include the value of imports if you are not a resident in the UAE and your customer is responsible for accounting for VAT under the reverse charge
o If you have purchased all or part of a business, Taxable Supplies made by the acquired whole or part of the business needs to be included accordingly
o The figure must only be reported in UAE Dirhams (AED)
o The taxable turnover starting from the trade license issue date or VAT commencement date in UAE — whichever is later — should be provided as part of the VAT registration application
6. What type of financial transactions should be included as part of the taxable expenses?
• Only those expenses that are subject to VAT can be included. Include purchases of goods and services which are subject to UAE VAT.
• Exclude purchases of goods and services which are:
o Exempted from UAE VAT; or
o Out of scope of UAE VAT
o The figure must only be reported in UAE Dirhams (AED)
o The taxable expenses starting from the trade license issue date or VAT commencement date in UAE — whichever is later — should be provided as part of the registration application
7. Do you expect the VAT on expenses to regularly exceed the VAT in taxable supplies?
This information allows the FTA to understand whether or not you will generally be in a position for VAT payment or VAT refund.
8. What does Exempt Supplies include?
Exempt Supplies include the following:
• Supplies of certain financial services
• Supplies of residential buildings other than the first sale
• The supply of bare land
• The supply of local passenger transport
9. On what basis am I applying for registration?
When you register for VAT, you are registering the person that is operating a business, not the business itself. A person can be an individual (i.e., operating as a sole trader), or a legal person or another form of entity (e.g., an unincorporated body such as a charity or club, a partnership or trust). A VAT registration covers ALL of the business activities undertaken by the registered person.
When you apply for VAT registration, we will ask you for information relating to the person that is to be registered and the current/intended business activities of that person.
10. Can I register/join a Tax Group?
If you qualify to join a Tax Group (if resident in the UAE, associated and which meet specific control criteria) and you do not have an existing VAT TRN, please select the relevant question within this application so you could be provided with the corresponding Tax Identification Number VAT Group (TINVG) with which you can request the prospective representative member to add you to the Tax Group.
11. Can I apply for VAT registration exception?
If you quality to apply for VAT registration exception, please select the relevant question within this application and provide supporting documents so you could be provided with the corresponding Tax Identification Number Exception (TINXC).
12. Do I have to register if I already have a Tax Registration Number (TRN) for Excise Tax?
Yes. You will be allocated a different Tax Registration Number TRN for VAT purposes if your application for registration is successful. If you have registered for Excise Tax before, you may find the process faster as some of the related and common profile related information will be prepopulated.
13. Can I have more than one TRN for VAT?
No. You can only hold one TRN for VAT purposes at any one time. It is your responsibility to ensure that duplicate applications are not submitted.
14. Who can submit the application to the FTA?
The application can be submitted to FTA by you, your tax agent or legal representative.
15. Can I save the application as a draft to be updated later? If yes, for how long?
Yes, you can save the in-progress application (as a draft) and complete it at a later point in time. However, if you do not submit your application within 60 calendar days of initiating it, your application will be automatically cancelled. There will be reminder notifications sent to your registered email address/verified mobile number.
16. What is the estimated time to complete application review by the FTA?
Generally, the estimated time to complete the application by the FTA is 20 business days from the date the completed application was received by the FTA. However, in case where any additional information is needed, FTA may take additional time to process the application. The applicant needs to provide the additional information and re-submit the application. It may take the FTA a further 20 business days to respond to the updated application. If the application is not resubmitted within 60 calendar days from the date you received the notification from FTA, the application shall be auto-rejected.
17. What will happen once the application is submitted to the FTA?
1. Processing your application:
a) Your application will now be reviewed by the FTA. If we require more information to assist with our review, we will contact you by email. You will need to provide the information requested in order for us to continue processing your application.
b) Once we have completed our review, we will either approve or, in some cases, may have to reject the application. We will notify you by email of our decision.
c) Where we reject an application, we will provide you with the reasons for doing so. You may re-apply but only once you have resolved the matters brought to your attention.
2. VAT registration certificate:
a) Following approval of your registration application you will be registered for VAT, and a VAT TRN (Tax Registration Number), Generated International Bank Account Number (GIBAN) and registration certificate shall be issued to you. You can download the registration certificate from your EmaraTax account.
b) If FTA has excepted you from VAT registration, you shall be issued a TINXC number (Tax Identification Number excepted from VAT). However, a registration certificate shall not be issued for registration exception.
1. The status of your application will be updated in the dashboard of your EmaraTax account. You can check it at any time by log in to the EmaraTax portal.
2. You could be liable for a late registration administrative penalty if we determine that you failed to register for VAT on time. A late registration administrative penalty of AED 10,000 could be imposed for failure to submit the application within 30 calendar days of being required to register. You can make a payment using the GIBAN or other payment options towards the settlement of any outstanding VAT or penalties.
In case you have submitted the application to join a Tax Group, you will be issued a TIN (TINVG) immediately upon submission of the application. Your application will be reviewed by the FTA when the Tax Group representative submits a Tax Group registration/amendment application in which your TINVG is included.
18. What happens if I don’t notify my requirement to be registered for VAT or am delayed in notifying the FTA?
If you fail to notify the FTA of a requirement to register for VAT within the timeframe specified in the Tax Law, an administrative penalty of AED10,000 will be charged against you. The FTA may issue a tax assessment to collect any potentially underpaid VAT.
19. How to check the status of the submitted application with the FTA?
The application status can be viewed on the applicant’s dashboard in EmaraTax portal. The following provides a summary of the application statuses:
• Drafted: You have not completed or submitted the application form
• In Review: Your application form has been received by the FTA and is under processing
• Awaiting Information: You need to provide additional information to the FTA
• Rejected: Your application form has been rejected by the FTA
• Approved: Your application form has been approved by the FTA and you are registered for VAT