Devolución del IVA

There are times when a company, after making its VAT return, obtains a negative result. In these cases, a refund of VATis applicable. It will generally not be a good sign, because enduring more than reverberating means incurring losses.

For this reason, it is very important for companies in this situation that the Treasury returns the VAT as soon as possible. But how long does it take for the Treasury to return VAT in these cases? Today we resolve this doubt.

VAT refund period

Depending on the regime in which it is taxed, the VAT declaration will be monthly or quarterly. And with the declaration comes the refund or income of VAT.

Therefore, the taxation regime determines the period for the refund of VAT.

REDEME or Monthly Return Regime

The declaration with monthly refund is given only in the REDEME regime (Monthly Return Regime).

This regime requires a more exhaustive control of the accounts,and is available to any company that does not pay taxes under a simplified regime, is aware of its obligations and has not been excluded from the Register in the previous three years.

In return, the company (or self-employed) can declare the VAT monthly, so that it regularizes it more frequently.

General assumption for VAT refund

In the case of companies and freelancers not registered in the REDEME, the declaration is made through the quarterly form 303. In the event that the result is negative, it will be offset by the following statements.

If, made the last quarterly declaration of the 4th quarter of the year, and applied the corresponding compensations, the result remains negative, the taxpayer will have the right to maintain the compensation for the following year or request the refund of VAT.

That is, the Treasury will only refund the VAT when this is derived from the declaration corresponding to the fourth quarter of the calendar year.

The time of return

In short, the Administration will refund the VAT when the result is negative,monthly in the case of REDEME and after the last quarterly declaration in the rest of the cases.

The return period will begin at the end of the period of declaration

and voluntary entry.

If in six months from the birth of the debt, the Treasury has not returned the VAT,interest will begin to accrue.

This does not mean that it is always paid before six months. But the truth is that the AEAT tries that before the accrual of interest begins, the refund has been paid.

It is therefore foreseeable that the VAT refund will take place before the end of the current month.

In the electronic headquarters of the AEAT you can check the status of the processing of practically any file, which includes the return files. All that is needed to access this information is the digital certificate or the Cl@ve.

Factors that may delay or advance the VAT refund


Often, the Tax Agency is ordered to withhold liquidity or to pay very gradually. This is more frequent than it seems, since the State may find itself in a tight liquidity situation.

On the other hand, the speed of the refund will depend to a large extent on the amount to which the VAT refund amounts. The more money the Agency owes, the longer it usually takes to return it.

Another factor that can slow down payment is the need to perform checks. However, a delay in payment does not have to mean that one is subject to an inspection action.

On the other side of the scale, when the Treasury is going to go into default, it usually accelerates payments. Taking into account that interest is applied automatically, the AEAT usually avoids the expiration of the six-month period.

There are also times when finances are in good condition and orders are given to make immediate payments.

The truth is that, for a mere matter of liquidity, it is often faster to apply the negative result to a compensation in the following monthly payment or the first quarter, depending on the tax regime.

And it is that the Treasury is nothing more than the manager of the Public Treasury. Any entrepreneur or freelancer who has had a negative result in the VAT return knows how important it is to retain liquidity.

In any case, a company should not depend on the VAT refund. As noted, how long it takes for the Treasury to return VAT depends on many factors, so it would be unwary to have a quick refund.