What is a negative invoice?

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As its name indicates, a negative invoice is one that contemplates, as a final amount, a negative quantity. This can happen, for example, when the goods are returned, or when there has been a billing error.

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When to issue a negative invoice

There are several assumptions for issuing a negative invoice, which we list below:

  • Applying the wrong personal income tax.
  • Error in the VAT rate (because it is not always 21%, there is also the reduced rate, for example).
  • Recovering VAT from an uncollected invoice.
  • Or we have simply not applied the offer or promotion that had been agreed with the customer on the price of the product or service.

Another common case is if you are working with a large company, while the invoice goes through all the relevant departments, for when they want to reject you as wrong, VAT has already been paid.

How to make a negative invoice

Cuándo emitir una factura en negativoOn the basis of the above-mentioned assumptions, the invoice would have to be corrected. In other words, a negative invoice is in fact only a credit memo amendment invoice.

  1. First the credit memo invoice or negative invoice is issued.
  2. In such an invoice, the wrong amount is subtracted.
  3. Finally, we issue the rectifying invoice, which includes the correct amount, including the wrong negative.

If, for whatever reason, several wrong invoices have been issued to the same customer (as long as it was in the same year) you can even collect them all in a single negative invoice (credit invoice) and then make a single correction invoice as well.

It is important to note that your customer cannot reject the wrong invoice, because in order to process the subsequent negative invoice (or credit invoice), you must include the reference to the invoice issued with the error in the amount.

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And, of course, it is necessary to make very clear the registration of each invoice, both the negative one and the others, in the AEAT, since the erroneous one is not cancelled, but must be recorded together with the negative invoice.

Case study requiring a negative invoice

In this example, the customer has returned a product, which is usually the case. Once the goods have been received, an amendment invoice is issued, which justifies the return to accounting.

The negative invoice or credit memo is then issued, including reference to the amendment invoice. This is very important: you must always include the reference of the correction invoice in the negative invoice.

A case in which it is not advisable to make a negative invoice, is the one of services, since to the being non tangible “returns” like those of products, they are more complex to justify before Treasury.

Cómo hacer una factura negativaData to be included in a negative invoice

  • It must be numbered, including your own number and serial number, as well as the numbering of the correction invoice to which it refers.
  • The concept of the invoice.
  • The date on which it was issued.
  • Tax data of both the sender and the receiver of the invoice.
  • The tax rate.


Many times, when talking about billing, we may be referring to the same situation but with different nuances and names, which can be somewhat confusing. And it goes without saying that with good billing software, these administrative processes will be much more convenient.

That is why we recommend you our ERP software, from which you can manage different invoicing lines, as well as manage all your invoices and access all the necessary information to complete them correctly for the Treasury Department.

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And of course, any doubt, in Innovacommerce we are at your disposal.

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