Definition of VAT ID in English Part III

Check sales tax identification number

It is possible to check the validity of the VAT identification number. This works through the EU’s VAT information exchange system, also known as VIES .

Check and confirm your own UID

If there are doubts about the validity of the sales tax identification number, the Federal Central Tax Office, BZSt for short, can also be asked by making a so-called qualified request . This confirms the validity and the assignment to the specified entrepreneur. There is also the option of having several sales tax IDs confirmed with a single request . It must be noted that such offers are not always reliable. There is still no clear case law on the subject. There are judgments, but they cannot be applied in principle.

VAT ID no. query from business partners

To request the VAT ID from one of your business partners , you have two types of confirmation available. This is on the one hand the simple and on the other hand the qualified confirmation procedure.

Simple and qualified confirmation procedure

Simple confirmation process With the simple confirmation procedure, you will receive a response from the Federal Central Tax Office as to whether this VAT ID no. is still valid at the time of your query in the country that was responsible for issuing it.
Qualified confirmation procedure With the qualified confirmation procedure, on the other hand, you will receive further extensive information. You get the information whether the company name fits, whether the legal form of the company is correct and whether the address is correct and in accordance with the stored data.

Where do I have to enter my VAT ID?


According to § 14 UStG , various mandatory information must be given on invoices , including the sales tax ID if the above requirements so require.


The imprint must also contain the sales tax ID, if one is available. This is stipulated in § 5 TMG . If an invoice is used to settle an intra-Community service, it must be listed by both partners. If this is not taken into account and there is no information, the absolutely necessary proof for the use of the VAT exemption is not available.

When does the VAT ID no. be stated on invoices?

The indication of the VAT ID no. is one of the mandatory details of a proper invoice for transactions within the EU market. For a proper outgoing invoice , it is therefore essential that the sales tax ID is also on it. This is so important because only then can a customer claim the sales tax shown on the invoice as input tax to the responsible tax office. If there is no sales tax ID on the invoice, this cannot be claimed from the tax office. If the invoice is purely for the domestic market, your tax number is sufficient.

Change of sales tax identification number

In principle, a sales tax identification number always remains valid . However, there are exceptions if this number is changed or reassigned.

  • The start of a company as part of a restructuring process creates a new company
  • A partnership is a corporation converted and there is a new company
  • There is a split from one company to a new company, even if the previous one only persists to a small extent.
  • If a new company is established when a company is merged through the addition of another company, a new VAT ID will be created for the newly founded company.


Even if many people are relatively certain that they know everything about their VAT ID, this is usually not the case. No wonder, because the matter is relatively complex at first. Still, the really important information is relatively easy to understand, so it’s easy to see the need for it. The application is also not a problem and the purpose of the VAT ID is also understandable.

Yes, the sales tax identification number is part of the bureaucracy, but a relatively harmless and understandable one, as it also has advantages. The VAT ID has no binding form , even if it always begins with two capital letters followed by a few digits. Most of the time, the country codes are immediately visible.

The sales tax ID is always valid for companies after it has been assigned. However, under certain circumstances, in the case of mergers, takeovers, etc., the sales tax ID may be reassigned if new companies are created.

Tax ID 3