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Using email as a transmission method in the ZRE and OZG-RE

by | Jan 4, 2022

Find out what you need to know when using email as your transmission method in the federal invoice submission portals.

In the ZRE and OZG-RE invoice submission portals, the invoice sender can transmit e-invoices to the recipient via several possible channels. When using email as your transmission method in either invoice submission portal, you should be aware of the following points:

General information on the email transmission method

The email transmission method can be used to send e-invoices via both the ZRE and the OZG-RE submission portals. For both invoice submission portals, please note the following:

  • Only one e-invoice can be sent per email
  • If an email contains more than one invoice, all email attachments, including invoices, will be discarded.
  • Attachments that are not e-invoices are automatically deleted from the email.
  • “No-reply” email addresses should not be used.
  • The subject line and text in the body of the email are irrelevant. They are automatically deleted from the email and are not forwarded to the invoice recipient. You may therefore leave these parts of the email blank.
  • The OZG-RE is not currently set up to reply to your email confirming the validity of your e-invoice. For confirmation of this, you will need to check the status of your invoice in the submission portal itself.

Please note that emails received from non-registered users will be deleted. E-invoices sent by non-registered users via email will not be stored in either of the portals and therefore cannot be paid. Please ensure that all your invoice senders are registered with the relevant portal(s).

Below you will find instructions on how to use the email transmission method in the ZRE invoice submission portal.

How to use email as a transmission method in the ZRE

The following instructions for the email transmission method refer to the ZRE invoice submission portal.

Step 1: Register with the ZRE

In order to be able to use the ‘email’ transmission channel, the invoice issuer must first register at the CISP/ZRE.

Step 2: Set up user profile

Step 2.1) Navigation in accounts

The registered invoice issuer can then activate the ‘email’ transmission channel in the user profile of the CISP/ZRE.

To do this, you must first select the respective account for which you want to use the ‘email’ transmission channel on the homepage.

ZRE Selecting account

In the main menu you can choose between the “natural person” account (corresponding to you, the registered invoice sender) or a company account, which you can create via the user management dashboard.

To create a company account, click the button “Start user management” in the main menu. This will take you to the user management dashboard, where you will have the option to “Create a ZRE company account”.

After selecting the “natural person” account or a company account in the main menu depicted above, you will arrive at a new page. At the top right of the page, click on “Edit account”.

ZRE header

Step 2.2) Selecting the email transmission method

In this step, it is important to enter the correct information in your user profile. The first section of the page shows the email address you used to register with the ZRE. In the next section, you can select your preferred transmission method for sending invoices.

Dialog editing account in ZRE

Check the box for “Email” and enter in the corresponding field the email address you wish to use to send e-invoices to the ZRE. The email addresses you enter here are the only ones you will be able to use for sending e-invoices to the ZRE. You may enter up to five email addresses. Confirm your changes by clicking “Save user profile”. For each email address you enter, you will receive a verification email. Please follow the instructions in the email. Once you have done this, you will be able to send e-invoices.

Step 2.3) Update information in your user profile (optional)

If you later decide that you want to send invoices from a different email address (or different email addresses), you must update this information in your user profile. E-invoices sent from email addresses not listed here will be automatically rejected. Please bear this in mind when planning your workflow and consider who will require access to electronic invoicing.

Step 3: Send e-invoices via email

Once your changes have been saved and your email addresses have been verified, you can send e-invoices to the ZRE from the addresses listed in your user profile.

Further information and resources in connection with the ZRE

You might like to familiarise yourself with the procedure for sending e-invoices via the ZRE before sending them to your customers or other invoice recipients.

You can try out the ZRE invoice submission portal using the test environment. Even in the test environment, you will need to register if you want to practise sending e-invoices by email. You will also need to activate the email transmission method in your ZRE account settings (user profile).

To send e-invoices in the ZRE test environment, please use the recipient address ref.xrechnung@portal.bund.de.

When you are ready to send e-invoices to real recipients using the ZRE production environment, please use the recipient address xrechnung@portal.bund.de.

Additional information on how to use the ZRE (and especially the various transmission methods) can be found in the ZRE’s Terms of use and Technical details.

Instructions for using the ‘email’ transmission channel at the OZG-RE

The following instructions for the ‘email’ transmission channel refer to the application on the OZG-RE invoice receipt platform.

Step 1: Registration

To use the email transmission method, the invoice sender must first register with the ZRE submission portal.

Step 2: Set up your user profile

Step 2.1: Navigate to the relevant account

After registering as a user, you can activate email as a transmission method in your ZRE account settings (user profile).

To do this, go to the main menu and select the account in which you wish to use email as a transmission method.

Dialog sending email

Click on ‘Send email’ and your email program will open; the recipient address for OZG-RE will already be automatically pre-filled for sending e-invoices.

Alternatively, you can select ‘Copy email address to clipboard’ to copy the recipient address for sending e-invoices to the OZG-RE, for example to transfer it to your address book.

The generically generated recipient address uniquely identifies you as the invoice issuer and can henceforth be used for sending your e-invoices to the OZG-RE. This email address always remains the same for your account, but you can retrieve this email address at any time on the homepage.

Attach your e-invoice to the email when you send it.

More detailed information and tools (OZG-RE)

Would you like to familiarise yourself with sending e-invoices to the OZG-RE before you send e-invoices to your customers or invoice recipients?

A test environment is available for testing the functionalities of the OZG-RE invoice receipt platform. Registration is also required in the test environment before you can send e-invoices by email.

You can test the functions of OZG-RE, such as sending e-invoices, in the OZG-RE test environment at https://test.xrechnung-bdr.de/edi/account/login.

For the final submission of e-invoices, you can reach the productive environment of the OZG-RE at https://xrechnung-bdr.de/edi/account/login.

However, you must register separately for the test environment and the productive environment of the OZG-RE.

Additional information on the use of the OZG-RE – and in particular the transmission channels – can be found in the terms of use of the OZG-RE.

Further information on e-invoicing and both federal invoice receipt platforms can be found in our FAQ section.

More current information on the topic of e-invoicing

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Peppol (Pan-European Public Procurement OnLine) is a compilation of components and specifications enabling the standardised exchange of documents between different business partners, using the infrastructure of the Peppol network.

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