On 14 June 2023, the Belgian tax administration published Circular 2023/C/58 (Dutch I French) on the practical implementation of the extended four-year limitation periods for VAT payments due, and the extended 10-year retention period for VAT books and documents, which came into force on 1 January 2023. For further information on the extended limitation and retention periods, see our Tax Alert of 10 October 2022 (Dutch I French).
In addition to some technical guidelines, the new circular letter contains some interesting points of note in connection with the new limitation period relating to VAT due in the event of the nonsubmission or late submission of the VAT return.
A late declaration is a periodic VAT return that was submitted after the 20th day of the month following the declaration period, with certain exceptions permitted under an administrative tolerance regime (the so-called "summer scheme").
This means that a periodic VAT return submitted after the 20th day following the declaration period, but before the 10th day of the following month, and for which no VAT penalties are currently imposed under existing administrative practice, may now be subject to the extended limitation period.
The extended limitation period is, as expected, restricted to the return that was not submitted or was submitted late, and is not extended to the entire calendar year.
The claim for VAT due must also be related to the nonfiling or late submission of the return. The extended limitation period is therefore limited to VAT which is:
These rules apply retroactively to any VAT that has become due as from 1 January 2023.
Frank is a member of the Tax Dispute Resolution team of lawyers at Deloitte Legal. He specialises in multi-jurisdictional tax planning and tax litigation. He also provides tax advisory services relating to mergers & acquisitions, VAT and other indirect and local taxes, transfer pricing, pensions and benefits, international and local corporate restructuring for holding and real estate companies.