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10 keys to understanding e-Invoicing in Chile

16/02/2015

As it stands today, many companies still have their reservations about the rollout of e-invoicing in Chile. For example, depending on the size of my business: When is the deadline for me to switch over to this new billing system? Which documents do I need to submit? How much does a digital certificate cost? ... Here are the 10 keys to e-invoicing in Chile that you should know.

1. Number of companies

Chile currently has around 685,000 companies, of which 75% are micro-businesses, approximately 500,000. There are 150,000 small businesses, 25,000 midsized firms and 10,000 large corporations, categorized by annual sales revenue and in the case of the latter by profits reaching over 100,000 UF. Sooner or later, all of them will be required to use e-invoicing.

2. Mandatory compliance with Law 20.727

The universality of Law Nº 20.727 2014 states that electronic invoices and other tax documents are henceforth mandatory for all companies. It is a universal law and therefore binding, stipulating the replacement of paper documents used in their economic activities by electronic invoices.

3. Irrefutable deadlines

The deadlines for companies to adapt to e-invoicing in Chile will depend on annual income, but also on their location if they are in an urban or rural area. Big businesses were the first to sign up, with 1 November as their legal deadline for adaptation. Companies must be working with e-invoicing by 1 February, 2016 and micro businesses before 1 February 2017.

4. But do we need to renew the electronic invoice every year?

No. The only thing to be renewed is the Digital Certificate, related to the electronic signature associated with each document. But bear in mind that this renewal may not be for just 1 year; it may be for 2 years or more. Everything will depend on the contract signed with the service provider company.

5. Time to implement e-Invoicing in a company

Despite what we might think, rolling out electronic billing in Chile is not a transaction that takes too long. Due to their size, big businesses might take longer. A project might take a couple of months, but for smaller companies there are online solutions they can download and have up and running the same day.

6. e-Invoicing is expensive

The savings on paper and the benefits and convenience of e-invoicing in Chile is an issue already analyzed previously. The cost of a digital certificate in Chile may be around $14,000, but this is amortizable in a short space of time.

7. Which documents can be managed?

With the rollout of electronic billing in Chile not only invoices can be handled this way, but also other tax-related documents the company uses to go about its business. These may include: credit and debit notes, export documents and invoicing, e-vouchers, receipts and invoices… it all depends on the service contracted by each company.

8. Freedom of choice for each company

Each company can decide to contract a different plan for e-invoicing management and compliance in Chile. Nevertheless, the law stipulates that at least credit notes and debit cards, purchase invoices, other bills and invoice payments all come under its aegis.

9. MiPyme for small businesses

If you have a company with annual sales of over 500 million pesos, you can use the purpose-built MiPyme tool the SII provides. It is aimed at small taxpayers that issue few electronic documents.

10. Soon on your Smartphone

The SII (IRS) is currently developing a cellphone app so that companies can submit tax documents by smartphone. This makes it easier to send this type of documentation from anywhere with internet access, saving time and space… and likewise contributing to fiscal control. One forecast estimates that by 2017 there will be up to 17 million smartphones in Chile, a sure-fire benefit for the business world.

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