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As of January 16, 2020, bills of lading will be required to be issued electronically in Chile


Starting this coming January, 2020, all taxpayers may only issue bills of lading electronically through the Internal Tax Service (SII) of Chile. This requirement is mandated by  Law 21.131 known as the 30-Day Payment Law, published last January by the Ministry of Economy, Development, and Tourism.  This measure was implemented to ensure sums and payment terms by providing enhanced security during transactions.

In doing so, the bill of lading will be added to the other Electronic Tax Documents required in Chile, with the most relevant being: Invoices, Non-taxable or Exempt Invoices, Purchase Invoices, Settlement Invoices, Credit Notes, and Debit Notes.

Bills of lading are tax documents that are required to be issued when an invoice is not issued at the time of delivery of goods or merchandise. Bills of lading are just that, a document that verifies and accounts for the delivery of merchandise by the seller and receipt by the recipient.

The bills must be numbered and stamped by the Chilean SII. Invoices issued at a later stage must state the number of the bill of lading as established by the legislation.

The maximum term for issuing the invoice from the creation of the bill of lading shall be the tenth day of the month following delivery of the merchandise, but no later than the last day of the previous month. On the other hand, the invoice acceptance period is 8 calendar days from the time of its receipt.

How to resolve common problems with unreceived invoices that have been declared to the S.I.I.

Electronic bills of lading are already being used within the Chilean electronic invoicing system, however on a voluntary basis. The only requirement for electronic billers, as of today, is to maintain a record of the “Electronic Bills of Lading.”

However, remember that, according to the Law, if the bill of lading cannot be delivered, the merchandise should not be delivered either. Therefore, it is important to have an efficient information exchange system that enables the correct issue and receipt of bills of lading. The EDICOM electronic invoicing platform automates this process and integrates it with any management system, according to SII requirements.

All of these changes are contextualized within the Tax Modernization Plan presented by the Ministry of Finance in 2018.  Among the project goals, the Chilean government aims to digitize all tax processes. It seeks to optimize the functioning of institutions, facilitate tax compliance, and provide enhanced security and legal certainty via a more agile and simple system that is also fully digital.

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