Real Estate

Transfer of (short-term) leased building by a developer not a transfer of a going concern for VAT purposes

In its judgment of May 15, 2020, the Supreme Court upheld the decision by the Court of Appeals. The building in question was leased on a VAT-exempt basis. As a result of this judgment, parties will be confronted with a higher amount of non-recoverable VAT.

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New preliminary ruling question about the ‘fixed establishment’ concept for VAT purposes

On December 20, 2019 the Austrian Bundesfinanzgericht asked the Court of Justice of the European Union for a preliminary ruling on the concept of a ‘fixed establishment’ in the Titanium Ltd case (C-931/19). The case is not only relevant for property letting companies, but potentially also for all VAT taxable persons with foreign activities, as it may provide a more detailed interpretation of the EU concept of fixed establishment.

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VAT recovery based on actual use permitted for bank

On March 27, 2020 the Court of Appeals Den Bosch rendered an interesting judgment about the recovery of VAT in a case concerning a financial institution. The Court ruled that the bank’s ‘actual use method’ had been sufficiently substantiated.

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Acquisition of only the legal ownership of shares in real estate legal entities is not subject to real estate transfer tax

The judgment rendered by the Court of Appeals ‘s-Hertogenbosch could also be important in practice with regard to shares in real estate legal entities that are acquired by investment funds without legal personality.

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Supreme Court: 2% real estate transfer tax more likely on offices converted to apartments

This is a favorable outcome for the real estate market. The acquisition of (an apartment right in) a converted building intended for residential use is more likely to be subject to 2% rather than 6% real estate transfer tax.

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CJEU: VAT payable on assignment of a debt recognized in enforcement proceedings

On October 17, 2019, the Court of Justice of the European Union (‘CJEU’) rendered judgment in the Paulo Nascimento Consulting case (no. C-692/17) concerning the VAT treatment of the assignment of a debt that had been recognized in enforcement proceedings. The CJEU ruled that such an assignment was subject to VAT. 

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Expo Real and 2020 Tax Plan – the latest tax developments for property investors

From 7 to 9 the international trade fair for real estate and property investors, Expo Real, will take place in Munich. This year a Meijburg delegation will again be present to discuss the latest developments in Dutch tax with international market parties. 

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Proposal to extend VAT adjustment rules to ‘expensive services’ has enormous impact

The VAT adjustment scheme is likely to be extended to cover the refurbishment of real estate and other so-called ‘expensive services’ such as software. It will then take longer for the VAT deduction on these to become final and, in the event of a change of use, VAT deducted in the past may have to be repaid. The new rules also offer the prospect of a VAT refund, which was initially precluded. This follows from a draft proposal published by the Ministry of Finance for public consultation purposes.

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VAT policy statement on specific state supervision of investment funds

On April 1, 2019, the Deputy Minister of Finance (hereinafter: Deputy Minister) published the Specific State Supervision Policy Statement, effective April 2, 2019. In this policy statement the Deputy Minister elaborates on the qualification ‘specific state supervision’, which the Court of Justice of the European Union (hereinafter: CJEU) imposed as one of the conditions for applying the VAT exemption for the management of special investment funds (Article 135(1)(g) EU VAT Directive).

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