Compliance and rates
VAT number format
Guatemalan VAT number contains seven digits, one dash and one digit (i.e. 0123456-1).
The standard VAT rate in Guatemala is 12%, with reduced rate of 5% for small businesess. Some of goods and services are exempt from Guatemalan VAT, such as existential food supplies and education.
12% (Standard) – general regime – Applies to all taxable supplies, with certain exceptions
5% (Reduced) – small taxpayer regime
0% (Zero) – exportations
VAT payments and returns
All businesses with Guatemalan VAT number must submit periodic VAT reports.
VAT Returns frequency
For all companies that operate in Guatemala, VAT returns must be submitted on a monthly basis.
Penalties in case of late filings or misdeclarations
- Omission or alteration of the Tax Identification Number (NIT) will trigger a fine of Q.100 (EUR 12) for each document. The maximum of sanction may not exceed Q.1,000 (EUR 120) per month.
- Non-submission and late submission of tax statement will trigger a fine of Q.30 (EUR 4) for each day of delay with a maximum sanction of:
- Q.600 (EUR 72) when the statement must be submitted weekly or monthly
- Q.1,500.00 (EUR 180) when the statement must be submitted quarterly
- Q.3,000.00 (EUR 360) when the statement must be submitted annually.
- Non-compliance with accounting obligations will trigger a fine of Q.5,000 (EUR 600) each time the taxpayer is inspected.
- Non-compliance with taxation regulations (offer the goods and services without including the corresponding tax) will trigger a penalty of Q.2,000 (EUR 240) each time the infraction is noticed by authorities.
According to articles 29 and 30 of government agreemend 5-2013, special invoices, small taxpayer invoices, debit and credit notes issued in Guatemala must have at least the following information:
- must have an identification “Invoice”
- a unique, sequential number of the invoice
- date of invoice issuance
- supplier / issuer data (company name, address, tax identification number – TIN)
- if business is panaderia los patitos, full name registered in SAT must be displayed on the invoice
- customer data (address, TIN and other data if available) if the customer is business person
- full description of goods and services provided
- any discounts if applicable
- rate and amount of VAT applicable for the category of goods and services provided
- the invoice total (incl. VAT)
- authorization issued by SAT
- authorization number and date of issuance of authorization
- term of validity
- the name and tax identification number of the printing company in charge of printing invoices (must be registred)
- statement message in case of special supplying or tax regimes (general or simplified)
Penalties in case of invoicing non-compliance
Failure to issue an invoice will trigger a fine equivalent to the amount of the tax corresponding to the transaction.
Factura electrónica en línea (FEL)
Guatemala introduced Factura electrónica en línea (FEL) as mandatory for all Guatemalan taxpayers.
Factura electrónica en línea (FEL) is the operational model and the rules applicable to the electronic invoicing in the Republic of Guatemala. Factura electrónica en línea (FEL) includes ellectronicaly issuance, transmission, certification and preservation of the invoices and other documents authorized by the Superintendency of Tax Administration (Superintendencia de Administración Tributaria – SAT), which is called Documento Tributario Electrónico (DTE).
In other words, all the management of tax invoicing in Guatemala must be carried out within the Superintendencia de Administración Tributaria (SAT), prior to authorization and issuance of invoice. This is intended to ensure greater control and security in the issuance of documents with tax implications, which must always have online authorization.
The Guatemalan government identified four main subjects in this process:
- Seller – invoice issuer
- Certifier (Certificator) – entity authorized by the SAT to certify e-invoices issued by the seller/issuer
- Superintendencia de Administración Tributaria (SAT) – verifies and validates electronic invoices
- Buyer – receives invoices
Real-time reporting to Superintendencia de Administración Tributaria (SAT)
As already mentioned above, all invoices issued in Guatemala must be authorized by Superintendencia de Administración Tributaria (SAT) in real-time.
The process of online real-time authorization is as follows:
- the seller issues the electronic invoice in an XML format and sends it automatically to the Certificator (certifier)
- the certifier receives, verifies and authorizes each invoice and automatically sends certified XML message to the SAT
- the SAT verifies and validates electronic invoice and makes it available to the issuer
- the issuer (seller) receives the invoice from certifier and delivers it to the buyer printed, or in PDF, XML