DEB : Company obligations for Intra-Community Trade

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REF.: 0052

If you carry out commercial transactions with European Union (EU) member countries or are planning to do so in the near future, this information may be useful:

Within the European Union, most trade is carried out freely, with no formalities and without border control: there is no need to make a customs declaration. However, you must submit a customs declaration of exchange of goods (DEB) detailing all your intra-Community trade to the customs office.

Why is this necessary?

Because the administration continues to perform two functions:

  • The compilation of external trade statistics;
  • The tax monitoring of Intra-Community Trade in goods (VAT).

Above what amount?

Modulating the burden of debtors – since 1 January 2011

< € 460 000 the previous year and no crossing of this threshold during the yearNo DEBSimplified shipping DEB
< € 460 000 the previous year and crossing of the threshold during the yearDetailed introductory DEB the first month after crossing the thresholdDetailed shipping DEB the first month after crossing the threshold
> € 460 000 the previous year Detailed introductory DEB for all introductions of the current yearDetailed shipping DEB for all shipments of the year


For introduction

Introduction: arrival of EU goods on French territory

At introduction, you must file a DEB in one of the following 2 cases:

  • In the previous year, you made an initial payment of € 460,000 or more: in this case, you must deposit a DEB from the 1st month of the current calendar year;
  • In the previous year, you made less than € 460,000, but you cross this threshold during the course of the current year: in this case, you have to submit a DEB from the month you crossed the threshold.

For shipping

Shipping: Shipment of goods from France to an EU country.

You must complete a DEB from the 1st euro.

When should you send your DEB?

The declaration is monthly. The DEB must be produced within 10 working days of the end of the month in which the VAT became due or the month in which the movement of goods took place.

What are the penalties?

A fine of € 750 is applied if the declaration is not filed within the statutory time limits.

A fine of € 1,500 is applied in case of failure to file the declaration within 30 days of a formal notice.

A fine of € 15 per omission or inaccuracy by declaration, the total not exceeding € 1,500 (per declaration).

Can you use a third party for the reporting?

You can delegate the DEB reporting to a third person (example: a group establishment or a service provider), however you remain responsible for the data provided.

For further help with your DEB or any other any related assistance, don’t hesitate to contact us by phone on +33 (0) 1 53 93 94 20 or by e-mail to [email protected]. Our team of English-speaking experts is here to answer any questions you may have.

<h2>Lucy Wright</h2>

Lucy Wright

Business Developer
<h2>Shuli Chi</h2>

Shuli Chi

<h2>Eric Le Sueur</h2>

Eric Le Sueur