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Fiscal Representative in Costa Rica

Fiscal Representative in Costa Rica

A non-resident business must designate a fiscal representative in Costa Rica, in order to register with the tax authorities as a taxpayer. The fiscal agent can also offer other services in addition to tax registration.

Below, our company formation agents in Costa Rica invite you to discover who can offer such services in this country and what the requirements for a tax agent are.

What is a fiscal representative?

fiscal representative is a company or person designated locally who is usually held jointly accountable for any VAT payments made by the non-resident companies in Costa Rica.  Even if appointing such an agent is mandatory for foreign businesses with no permanent establishments in this country, it can also be employed optionally by local enterprises.

Accountants, tax advisors, and lawyers in Costa Rica are examples of fiscal representatives. These delegates are able to assist foreign companies with their tax obligations.

Just like in other states, in Costa Rica too there are two fiscal representation alternatives:

  • limited representation;
  • general representation.

The latter often affects the degree of responsibility and obligation involved for the Costa Rican fiscal agent. More precisely, the representative will become liable when not complying with the tax obligations of the client.

If you want to open a company in Costa and want to appoint a fiscal agent, you can obtain more information on liability matters from our local consultants.

Services provided by a Costa Rican tax agent

Following the appointment, the fiscal representative bears equal responsibility for any VAT owed on sales of goods produced by the non-resident company in Costa Rica. The agent must make sure that all compliance standards are fulfilled.

A fiscal representative has the following duties:

  • to make sure that the company is properly registered with the Costa Rican tax authority;
  • to ensure that all invoices, VAT returns, application of VAT rates, and conversion rates are compliant;
  • to complete VAT returns and any other required paperwork;
  • to maintain documents that attest to the compliance of VAT and tax regulations;
  • to handle the payment of any taxes, fees, or fines related to the import and export of products or services.

A fiscal representative can also be hired by foreign citizens who immigrate to and obtain residency in Costa Rica with the intention of acting as sole traders. These too are subject to taxes for which such an agent can be of use.

Advantages of using a fiscal representative in Costa Rica for local companies

As mentioned earlier, the fiscal representation services of a tax agent can also be hired by Costa Rican companies. The main advantage of using such a solution is that a fiscal consultant can assist them in avoiding penalties. Import VAT and customs procedures are necessary when importing goods into Costa Rica, and they can be quite demanding. Also, the procedures to recover import VAT can be quite elaborate for businesses planning to import products into Costa Rica and sell them to another state. In such cases, fiscal representatives can take care of these duties easily and fast.

You can also count on us for fiscal representation services.

What to consider about the VAT in Costa Rica

The VAT is the most important indirect tax applied in Costa Rica. Failure to comply with the requirements imposed by the Revenue Department can result in penalties. As such, companies should note that:

  • VAT returns must be filed monthly, and the amount due must be paid within the first 15 days of the following month;
  • in case of late filings, the penalty equals 50% of the minimum monthly salary;
  • the fine can go up to 1% of the due amount in case of repetitive failure to pay.

Our team is also made up of immigration lawyers who can help you apply for citizenship in Costa Rica. Feel free to contact us if you need fiscal representation services in Costa Rica or support in any other legal matters.