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Special types of invoices

There are specific requirements for issuing, holding and supplying special types of tax invoices, which are:

Buyer-created tax invoices  

For some industries, it's more convenient for the person who receives the goods to determine:

  • the value of a supply, and 
  • the amount to be charged for it. 

In this case, the recipient will provide the necessary information for the invoice and issue a buyer-created tax invoice.

Example

Freezing works issue buyer-created tax invoices to farmers who supply stock. The freezing works weigh, slaughter, and price the animals, as well as determine other costs like levies. They are best able to provide the necessary information on the invoice.

Conditions of a buyer-created invoice

A buyer-created invoice can be issued if both the supplier and the recipient:

  • are GST-registered persons
  • have agreed that only the recipient will supply the invoice, and 
  • keep a copy of the invoice.
Important

You can only issue buyer-created tax invoices if we've given you approval to do so. You'll need to apply to us in writing to get the necessary approval.

We can cancel our approval at any time if you don't meet our standards for invoices.

Application to use buyer-created invoices

Your application will need to show us you meet the conditions above. You'll also need to provide us with details of:

  • why the supplier isn't in a position to determine the values of supply
  • the special circumstances under which the recipient is in a better position to determine the value of supply, and
  • a particular type of supply provided, or a list of proposed suppliers and their IRD numbers.

You'll also need to include in your application a proposed invoice. The buyer-created invoice must show:

  • the standard information a tax invoice must show
  • the suppliers GST number (if both parties are providing supplies, show both GST numbers)
  • 15% GST added to gross supply
  • 15% GST added to deductions or charges (GST credits), and
  • the words "Buyer-created tax invoice - IRD approved" in a prominent place.

The recipient can use this buyer-created tax invoice to support a claim for the GST paid.

See an example of a buyer-created tax invoice

Tax invoices issued by agents 

Sometimes an agent purchases or sells goods and services on behalf of someone else (the principal). The principal is still the purchaser or seller, not the agent.

If both the principal and agent are GST-registered persons, the agent may issue a tax invoice (or debit or credit note) on behalf of the principal. The tax invoice need only be issued in the name of the agent and there is no need for the agent to put the principal's name on the tax invoice. The principal can't issue a tax invoice for that same supply as well.

If the agent receives the supply it is treated as though it's made to the principal and not the agent. However, an agent can ask the supplier for a tax invoice as though the supply had been made to the agent.

Agents must keep a record of the name, address and GST number of the principal in any transaction.

Employee as an agent

An employee can act as an agent for their employer. They may incur expenses on their employer's behalf as part of the taxable activity. The employer can reimburse the employee and claim the GST credit. The tax invoice must show the name and address of the employee acting as agent for the employer.

If the employer pays the employee an allowance to reimburse them for expenses, the employer can't claim any GST credit for the allowance.

Multiple supplies  

A tax invoice may contain details of more than one supply. A common example would be the leasing of commercial premises.

While each supply on an invoice must be separately identified, there is no need to show the GST for each supply separately. A total of all supplies will do.

See an example of a tax invoice for multiple supplies