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Foreign Currency Invoicing

Question asked by Andy Miller 5 years ago

When invoicing in another currency for payment in that currency why does it show the Sterling amount? What possible use is that to a customer?

Its fine to show the sterling equivalents internally within the system but why would you put it on a document to a customer?

Please create an option not to show the sterling amount, or better still dont show it period.

8 Replies

Goods are fairly simple. The basic rule of thumb is that the 'place of the supply' (in terms of VAT) is the country where the goods are located when supplied. Based on that, the VAT needs to be shown in GBP on the invoice so what Clear Books are doing is correct.

Hi Andy

I've just jumped in the demo a/c and it seems to list the currency amount ok:

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Which screen were you looking at?

Sorry if I was not clear. I was talking about the invoice itself! See attachment

My question stands. What possible reason is there to show Sterling equivalent on a Euros invoice? Its irrelevant and confusing.

After some further testing I found that it only does it where there is a VAT amount. The issue is that we deal with a number of organisations that are not VAT registered and therefore the VAT must be added to the invoice.

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Is the place of supply classed as the UK? If so, it's a requirement to show the VAT amount in GBP. I don't believe the net & gross figures need to be in GBP in that scenario (legally) but i'm guessing if the VAT's in GBP there's it makes sense to show the rest the same way too.

The example is actually a dummy invoice I created using Spain as a customer address. The real situation arose for a non VAT registered Irish customer which is the first time we have had to invoice in Euros for a non VAT registered customer as we have only been using ClearBooks for invoicing since June 1st. The goods had been supplied to the Irish customer's premises in Ireland with the appropriate drop down for VAT 'Supply of Goods to EU Customer' selected. Therefore I can think of no reason for this format which can only lead to confusion. We already have the situation of customers asking to be billed in one currency and then paying in another without encouragement from the invoice. Such errors turn out expensive with penal FX commission and then bank charges on top!

I cannot think any business that would wish to invoice a customer with this totally confusing format

Goods are fairly simple. The basic rule of thumb is that the 'place of the supply' (in terms of VAT) is the country where the goods are located when supplied. Based on that, the VAT needs to be shown in GBP on the invoice so what Clear Books are doing is correct.

OK, sort of. I must confess we have shown the whole invoice in Euros in the past, but I accept what you say. If the bill is in Euros to be paid in Euros then why is it Euros in brackets and not sterling? You have to admit the invoice is confusing. It would be a lot clearer for the customer if the VAT was the only figure shown in Sterling and it was the sterling figure in brackets.

Anyway, thanks for your responses.

I'm not a million % clear on the rule myself in all honesty, the only thing i'm certain of is the VAT element needing to be shown in GBP.

Put the issue forward as an idea, i'll certainly vote on it unless there's some obscure legal reason why it's being done the way it is (VAT is a minefield!)

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