Advance ruling on VAT

The import VAT taxation of importers included in the VAT payers register was transferred to the Tax Administration on 1 January 2018.

As of 1 January 2018, value added tax is collected by the Tax Administration if the importer is included in the register of VAT payers at the time when Customs approves the customs declaration lodged for releasing goods into free circulation, or for applying the temporary admission procedure with partial exemption from customs duty.

An application for an advance ruling regarding import VAT can be processed by Customs or by the Tax Administration. The decisive factor is whether or not the applicant applying for the advance ruling is included in the register of VAT payers when the processing of the application begins.

  • The advance ruling on taxes to be paid for goods upon import is given by the Tax Administration if the applicant is included in the register for VAT payers when the processing of the application for an advance ruling begins.
  • However, the advance ruling is given by Customs if the applicant is a natural person included in the register for VAT payers and the importation referred to in the application is not a part of their business activity.

Applying for an advance ruling

An advance ruling is applied for in writing from Customs. A report needed for processing the matter should be provided in the free-form application with a specification regarding the relevant topic for which an advance ruling is applied.

The application should contain the name of the applicant/company and contact information and be signed. If the applicant is a company or other entity, a person/persons authorised to sign should sign the application. If an agent drafts the application, the power of attorney must be enclosed.

Send the application to Customs Foreign Trade and Taxation Department. The contact information is displayed at the bottom of the page.

Customs sends the applicant a written decision. The decision may be appealed.

An advance ruling is issued for a specific period, yet no longer than until the end of the calendar year following the issuing of the ruling. A legally valid advance ruling is observed as binding at the request of the recipient of the ruling for the period of time for which it has been issued.

The advance ruling is subject to a charge. The fee in 2017 is determined in accordance with the Ministry of Finance Decree on Customs performances subject to charge (1364/2016):

  • regarding commercial activity - 500 euros
  • when the applicant is a private person and the activity is non-commercial – 150 euros
  • a decisions on not giving an advance ruling – 50 euros.

Contact us

Tullin ulkomaankauppa- ja verotusosasto / Oikaisu
PL 512, 00101 Helsinki
General instructions for businesses

E-services’ support for businesses +358 295 5207

General instructions for businesses offers advice Mon–Fri 8 am–4.15 pm. Have a look at the FAQ or contact us with your question.

Customs Information Service