FG Hamburg on the refund of tobacco tax

In its ruling of 9 June 2017, the Hamburg tax court ruled that taxes levied on additional quantities transported from another EU member state to the German tax territory with goods subject to tobacco tax in a tax suspension procedure must be reimbursed on admission to a tax warehouse. Companies importing tobacco products should now consider whether they can apply for a refund.

Additional quantities are not subject to tax suspension procedures

In the decided case, tobacco products were transported to Germany from an EU Member State for tax purposes. This was done in the tax suspension procedure. However, not all the goods carried were listed in the electronic administrative documents for this procedure. The additional goods were erroneously added to the delivery.

First, in its decision, the Fiscal Court clarified that additional quantities of excisable products not mentioned in the electronic administrative documents for transport in the tax suspension procedure were not part of the procedure. Therefore, the dispatch of these additional quantities from another Member State to the German tax territory would give rise to excise duties.

Refund of tobacco tax

However, the tobacco tax levied on the excess quantities is to be refunded in accordance with § 32 of the Tobacco Tax Act if the surplus goods are admitted to a tax warehouse prior to their seizure. There was no restriction in the law to the effect that tobacco products of the free movement of other Member States could not be placed in a tax warehouse. As a consequence of this decision, companies should consider the possibility of applying for reimbursement of excessively high tobacco taxes on additional quantities.

O&W will check for you if a refund of tobacco tax paid is possible.

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Lawyer Dr. Tristan Wegner

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