On 26 January 2012, the Court of Justice delivered its judgement in case C-218/10 ADV Allround. This case concerned a German employment agency that supplied self-employed lorry drivers to Italian haulage companies. At that time, the supply of staff was taxable in the country of the customer, while the provision of a general service was taxable in the country of the supplier.
The local tax office of the supplier was of the opinion that the supply of self-employed drivers constituted the supply of staff. Therefore, the supplier charged German VAT to its customers in Italy. When the Italian customers applied for a refund of the German VAT with the central tax office, the refund request was rejected. The central tax office was of the opinion that the supply of self-employed drivers constituted a "supply of staff" and therefore, should be taxed in the country of the customer (Italy).
The Court ruled on the questions, asked by the German Finance Court, whether the "supply of staff" also includes the supply of self-employed persons and whether Member States should ensure that a service is taxed the same way at the supplier and the customer, even if they fall within the jurisdiction of different tax authorities.
The Court ruled that the "supply of staff" does not only cover employed persons but also self-employed persons. This decision is now only relevant to situations in which a supplier supplies staff to a non-business customer outside the EU. The general rule now is that a B2B service is taxed in the country of the customer and a B2C service is taxed in the country of the supplier.
With regard to the second question, the Court ruled that Member States do not need to amend their domestic procedural rules in order to ensure that a service is taxed in the same way at the supplier and the customer, even if they fall within the jurisdiction of different tax authorities. It is up to the Member State to ensure that VAT is collected accurately and with respect for the principle of fiscal neutrality. Nevertheless, the Court ruled that a Member State must ensure that parties can turn to courts in case of discord.