The Standard Audit File for Taxation (SAF-T)


The Standard Audit File for Taxation (SAF-T)

The Standard Audit File - for Taxation (SAF-T) is a file format that specify how to package all the most important accounting data in a standard format. The SAF-T is a recommendation of the OECD’s Committee on Fiscal Affairs (CFA). The file format makes it easier for taxpayers to provide their electronic records to tax auditors in support of their tax return and for auditors to review accounting records.

There are currently three use for the SAF-T files:

  • Auditing purpose.
    Every Auditor or VAT inspector has the discretion to demand the file at the occasion of an audit. Accounting software should be able to generate the SAF-T file when auditors require it.SAF-T allows auditors ready-access to data to perform compliance and substantive testing.
  • Archival purpose.
    The SAF-T format is used to store the accounting data for archival purpose. Accounting data  is therefore available over the times in a standard format. This use case is especially important for cloud service solution, that makes the data available only until they pay the subscription.
    Using the SAF-T file for archival purpose is a very intelligent way to have always access to the accounting data. 
    SAF-T is the standard archival format in Norwegian for companies with a minimun revenues.
  • Analytics purpose.
    You can use the accounting data for analytics and reporting that your current accounting solutions does not offer.
  • Moving data to other solutions.
    The SAF-T file allows companies that switch solution to more easily move their accounting data to other solutions. 

The structure of the SAF-T

The SAF-T file is an XML file that has been conceived to structure all the accounting data in a standard format. The SAF-T format has been conceived in a way that allows countries to create localized version that best support the local 

The forma include the most important accounting data:

  • Header information.
    Company information
  • Master Files
    • General ledger Accounts (GeneralLedgerAccounts)
      All the accounts used within the accounting solutions, with
      • AccountId and Description
      • Account grouping, account type and account standard id for country specific categorisation.
      • Opening and closing balance.
    • Accounting Taxonomy (Taxonomies)
      Information for grouping the accounts for reporting.
    • Customers (Customers)
      List of all the customers:
      • Address and company information.
      • AccountId and grouping.
      • Opening and closing balance.
    • Suppliers (Suppliers)
      List of all the suppliers:
      • Address and company information’s.
      • AccountId and grouping.
      • Opening and closing balance.
    • TAX table (TaxTable)
      Information regarding the VAT or Sales Tax.
      • Tax Code
      • Percentages and applicability date.
    • Inventory (PhysicalStock)
      • Products list
      • Quantities, opening and closing values.
    • Fixed Assets
      • Id and descriptions
      • Acquisition information
      • Valuation
  • General Ledger Entries
    Journal Entries
    • Transactions date, type
    • Source documents
    • Account id, customer or supplier info
    • Debit and credit amount
    • Tax information
    • Analysis (Cost, projects, amounts)
  • Source Documents (SourceDocuments)
    • Sales Invoice
    • Purchase invoice
    • Payments
    • Movements of goods
    • Assets transactions

Currently Products, Source documents and other data is not imported.

Standard Audit File for Payroll (SAF-P)

The SAF-P (AuditFilePayroll) is aimed at saving data relative the payroll. The SAF-P is structured in this way.

  • Header
    With company information.
  • MasterFiles
    With data for Employees, Branches.
  • TransactionsFiles.

For more information see the OECD Guidance document for SAF-P version 1.0 (2010).

Banana Accounting currently does not provide a reader for SAF-P files.


Share this article: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn | Email