In Europe, for income tax deductible purchases, I need to provide invoices rather than a proof of payment. However, a business in California refuses to send me one, just saying they don't do that. Is that even legal?

  • 3
    How do you know how much to pay without an invoice? – littleadv Jun 4 '13 at 17:31
  • 2
    littleadv has a very good point. What was it you purchased? How did you pay for it? Was it an online transaction? Was there something on your screen you could have printed and used as an invoice? – Chris W. Rea Jun 4 '13 at 18:19
  • I had to pay by credit card, online. So I do have a proof of payment, but a valid invoice must have a tax number, invoice number and company address, to name a few things. It was for having a credit check for a temporary apartment. – kslstn Jun 5 '13 at 1:49
  • Which part of Europe are you in? 'Europe' has a variety of tax rules. – DJClayworth Jun 5 '13 at 13:59
  • My question is about California, but it's about tax in the Netherlands – kslstn Jun 9 '13 at 16:30

We run into this all the time with our EU clients. As far as I can tell, the only requirements when it comes to invoicing have to do with sales tax, which is determined at the state level, and only in the case that items are taxable. It seems that the service provided to you is not taxable and so there is no obligation under Californian law to provide you with the invoice you need.

That said, it would be nice to provide this information to you as a courtesy. We don't provide the information typically required by EU tax authorities on our receipts either, but whenever one of our EU clients requests a more formal invoice we gladly send them one.

  • Thanks! Only leaves me wondering how Californians have to prove they made tax deductible purchases if they paid these with cash. – kslstn Dec 17 '13 at 18:45
  • 1
    @kslstn for that purpose a receipt showing the nature of the purchase would suffice. – Korneel Bouman Dec 17 '13 at 20:30

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