Mexico: Carta Porte 2.0

Ramón Frias
December 9, 2021

On 1 May 2021, the Mexican tax administration (SAT) enacted a new requirement via the new Bill of Lading Supplement (locally known as Complemento de Carta Porte), making it mandatory for taxpayers moving goods between addresses within the country to inform and receive authorisation from the SAT.

This Complemento is required whenever taxpayers move goods within Mexico via the highways, using their means of transportation or hauling companies’ services.

This new mandate’s implications are enormous in terms of compliance, not just because of the technical complexity of the structured files that need to be submitted but also because of the high level of orchestration necessary to prepare the information required for tax administration validation.

Given that most taxpayers use third parties to deliver their products to customers and for their own needs, the information contained in the Carta Porte will likely come from two different sources: information related to the products being delivered will come from the owner, while the information related to the means of delivery, driver, dates of delivery etc. will come from the hauling company.

Implementation Challenges

The first challenge that came with this mandate was understanding its scope and the responsibilities of the parties involved in the remittance of the information. While the original provisions of the tax code and the miscellaneous fiscal resolution seemed to imply that the Carta Porte would be limited to movements of products within federal roads in Mexico, later documents from the SAT mentioned it would be required for all movements via federal and local roads.

The SAT resolved this issue by reverting the Carta Porte to its original boundaries (only required when using federal roads), but there were other more significant issues that weren’t as easy to solve.

The technical documentation released under version 1.0 did not address specialised types of transportation services such as towing, armed cash transport, fuels, parcel and courier services, or purely logistic services. In addition, version 1.0 also included several limitations regarding the information required in the nodes of the XML schemas released by the SAT. Many of their attributes, such as those describing specific measurements, places or transactions were not sufficiently detailed in the catalogues of the schema.

Version 2.0 Changes

Version 2.0 of the Carta Porte was introduced to address these issues and many others that have been undermining the mandate’s implementation.

Therefore, this version 2.0 of the technical documentation came with 11 new appendixes where the tax administration detailed procedures and requirements for specific situations and types of transportation services.

The new appendixes 1, 2 and 3 are intended to redefine the general conditions of the issuance of the Carta Porte, the data requirements for the graphic representation of this document and how the Carta Porte would be required in the transfer of goods via federal roads. Appendixes 4 and 5 establish necessary specifications for logistic services provided by third parties in the distribution of products and how parcel and courier service providers will comply with the Carta Porte, respectively.

The technical information expected from entities providing armored transportation of cash, towing, cranes and salvage transportation services to comply with the Carta Porte was defined by the new Appendixes 6 and 7.

Appendix 8 is exclusively intended to set the conditions of the Carta Porte in the transportation of fuels and other hydrocarbons, and Appendix 9 describes the compliance requirements for those providing consolidated transport of products.

Finally, appendixes 10 and 11 describe the procedures to follow in situations of contingency when products are being transported and what kind of information would be required for returns of products.

In addition to the mentioned new appendixes, version 2.0 of the Carta Porte brought multiple changes to the attributes on many nodes by adding new ones, modifying the conditions of many existing ones or simply by suppressing those considered unnecessary.

Postponement of the Carta Porte

When SAT issued the first regulations of the Carta Porte, the effective date for mandating its implementation was set to be 30 September 2021. However, given the difficulties faced by the taxpayers and hauling companies attempting to comply, the mandate implementation was postponed and set in two stages: the first stage would start on 1 December and end on 31 December 2021. During that time, the issuance of the Carta Porte is mandatory; however, the tax administration will not enforce the validation process. SAT set the second stage to begin on 1 January 2022, when the SAT would enforce compliance with every part of the supplement, ensuring taxpayers use the correct schema and provide precise information on each document.

However, given the significant number of changes introduced with version 2.0 and that many taxpayers were not ready to start implementing the Carta Porte on 1 December 2021, the SAT has decided to remove this deadline for “Soft implementation”. It announced, via a new resolution, that the Carta Porte would become fully mandatory in all its parts from 1 January 2022.

Even though it seems that the implementation of the Carta Porte will begin as planned on 1 January 2022, it is still unclear if taxpayers will be ready to comply with this new mandate in time, in light of the extensive changes SAT applied to the CFDI with the new version 4.0. As there is no hint of additional postponement to the implementation date, taxpayers need to ensure their systems are fully compliant by 1 January 2022, or risk facing penalties from the SAT.

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Ramón Frias

Ramon is a Tax Counsel on the Regulatory Analysis team at Sovos. He is licensed to practice law in the Dominican Republic and is a member of the Dominican Bar Association. He has a Certificate Degree from Harvard University as well as a J.D. from the Universidad Autonoma de Santo Domingo. Ramon has written a number of essays about tax administration and has won the first prize in the international essays contest sponsored by the Inter American Center of Tax Administrations (CIAT). Prior to joining Sovos, Ramon worked for more than 10 years in the Department of Revenue of the Dominican Republic where he served as Deputy Director. He is proficient in French and Spanish.
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