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Brussels, 18 March 2010

VAT: The Commission to bring Greece before Court of Justice for not ensuring in its legislation the refund of unduly paid VAT and other taxes

The Commission has decided to bring Greece before the ECJ for incomplete implementation of three ECJ judgements against Greece with regard to the refund of unduly paid taxes, including VAT. Under EU law, taxpayers have the right to be repaid taxes which were levied by Member States in violation of EU law. Greece did not make this repayment possible.

Where a Member State is found to have imposed a tax which is in violation of EU law, individuals have the right to obtain a refund of the amount of tax paid, not due, under EU law.

On three occasions (case C-62/93; joint Cases C‑78/02 to C‑80/02 and C-13/06) Greece was condemned by the ECJ for the wrong application of the VAT directive, in a way that should have entitled taxpayers to a refund of the unduly paid VAT or to a deduction. In practice Greece did not make these refunds or deductions possible.

The Commission sent a reasoned opinion to Greece in February 2008 (IP/08/338) and October 2009 (IP/09/1457) respectively. However, since Greece did not take appropriate action, the Commission has now decided to refer the cases to the Court of Justice.

New: For detailed information on these cases please see:

For the latest general information on infringement measures against Member States see:

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