Some other 2020 corona support measures
24 September 2020
The corona crisis has forced the Belgium Government to take various support measures to sustain the economy. Hereafter, you can find a brief summary of initiatives that may have a substantial impact on your liquidity situation of 2020.
- Those being hit hard by the corona pandemic and facing payment difficulties can request a deferred payment plan to settle direct tax debts with the competent regional tax collection office. Initially, such request was possible until 30 June 2020. However, this deadline has been extended until 31 December 2020;
- There is an automatic extension until 31 October 2020 for the payment of the corporate social security contribution whose deadline was originally set at 30 June 2020, regardless whether the company is in financial distress;
- There is a new partial Belgium payroll withholding tax relief until 30 August 2020 to encourage companies to put employees back to work or to recruit additional staff ;
- The conditions to benefit from the tax shelter regime for audiovisual works and podium arts have been relaxed for both the investor and the production company;
- Employers are entitled to grant their staff a lump-sum home office allowance of maximum EUR 129,48 per month as a result of the COVID-19 crisis. This allowance is generally free of both Belgium personal tax and social security. A forthcoming circular letter will further elaborate on the conditions to be satisfied in this respect. This circular will be valid until 31 December 2020;
- Employers are entitled to grant a so-called consumption cheque to their staff until 31 December 2020. This cheque is generally free of both Belgium personal tax and social security for the employee whilst the employer can claim a full cost deduction;
- The scope of the personal tax credit for gifts has been extended. Those who make a gift to a non-for-profit organization or to a similar instance in 2020, are eligible for a 60% (instead of 45%) tax credit;
- The Flemish Government has made the scope of the so-called win-win loans more attractive. Small and medium-sized companies who need additional start-up capital have the opportunity to take up “cheap loans” from individuals, e.g. friends and family. If so, the individual is eligible for a personal tax credit;
- Belgium has concluded agreements with its neighboring countries to address the factual situation whereby frontier workers are forced to work from home due to the corona crisis. In summary: for the purpose of determining the personal tax liability of that frontier worker in both countries, days spent at the home office will be considered as working days at the place where that frontier worker would be supposed to work without corona crisis measures taken by the Government.
Every taxpayer (employer or employee ; company or individual) is strongly encouraged to carefully ascertain whether he or she makes maximum use of the various support measures and corresponding tax benefits.