Refund applications can be made at the end of a book year. The DGT is required to make a decision on a VAT refund application, on the basis of a VAT audit, within 12 months of the receipt of a complete application. If no decision has been made within 12 months, the application is considered to have been approved.
Relevant supporting documents for a VAT refund must be delivered to the DGT within one month of the application date. Any documents delivered after that period may be ignored by the DGT in the VAT refund calculation.
A taxpayer classified as a golden taxpayer is entitled to obtain early (pre-audit) VAT refunds. The golden taxpayer designation is a status granted by the DGT to taxpayers who fulfill certain criteria, such as the fling of tax returns on time, the absence of tax in arrears, and the lack of any criminal involvement. The DGT every year designates, on the basis of the criteria, certain taxpayers as golden taxpayers. Once a taxpayer is granted this status, the company is eligible to apply for early VAT refunds. It must notify the DGT in writing if it does not want to make use of the privilege.
A pre-audit refund can be based only on a verification of the VAT returns and must be granted within a month after the completed VAT refund application is received. The DGT may conduct a tax audit after the early VAT refund is granted. If it proves, on the basis of the tax audit, that the taxpayer has received a higher VAT refund than it should have done, the excess amount is subject to an administrative penalty of 100%.
Monthly refunds are possible for certain taxpayers (exporters of goods or services, suppliers to VAT collectors, companies in the pre-production stage and suppliers of goods or services for which VAT is not collected, if they meet certain criteria).