Electronic invoicing becomes mandatory in Germany

Published: November 30, 2023

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On 17.11.2023, the Bundestag passed the Growth Opportunities Act, which was referred to the Mediation Committee by the Bundesrat on 24.11.2023. It contains VAT regulations for the new B2B e-invoicing obligation that will come into force on 01.01.2025.

The processing of electronic invoices (e-invoices) based on XML-based formats such as X-Rechnung, ZUGFeRD and eb-Interface has become increasingly important in Europe in recent years, particularly in the DACH region. In Italy and France, e-invoicing obligations are already anchored in law, and such an obligation is now also in preparation in Germany.

This affects all B2B transactions with companies based in Germany. The obligation will generally take effect from 01.01.2025; a transitional period with specific exemptions is planned for the period up to 2027. This is due, among other things, to the expected workload of the process transition (!). Companies should therefore familiarise themselves with the new requirements as soon as possible and define solutions that make sense for them in order to start implementation in the right time.

How will electronic invoicing be defined in the future?

From 01.01. 2025, an electronic invoice is an invoice issued, transmitted and received in a structured electronic format that enables further electronic processing and complies with CEN format EN 16931 (Section 14 (1) sentences 3 and 4 UStG-E). Invoices in accordance with the XStandard and invoices in ZUGFeRD format from version 2.0.1 fulfil the planned requirements according to the BMF.

In the coming weeks and months, we will prepare all the latest information and government decisions and make them available on our website. Electronic invoicing will only become further established in other areas, both legally and economically. It is less prone to errors, compliant and much easier to process. The changeover therefore always makes sense, regardless of the legal situation.

We will also be happy to advise you on the possibilities of our incoming invoice solution. Our solution makes sense as a bridging technology, especially when processing invoices in structured format and PDF/paper invoices at the same time: in the case of e-invoices, the data supplied is read directly from the machine-readable formats and used. In the case of classic PDF or scanned paper invoices, the invoice data is read using modern AI and then transferred to the workflow, ERP and archive for further processing.

You can find more information here:

In the coming weeks, we will be analysing exceptions from the regulations until 2027, different solutions, process definitions and all the advantages of e-invoices for you. If you would like to find out more now, please get in touch with us:

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