What does the Flemish coalition agreement mean for your wallet?

Aleksandr Natanelov   |  

Aleksandr Natanelov

Aleksandr Natanelov

Aleksandr is partner of the Tax & Legal team.

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On 30 September 2019, the Flemish coalition agreement was concluded, albeit with some delay. As always, the agreement contains a number of fiscal measures. In this case, these measures relate to various domains. Below you will find a brief overview of the most interesting/relevant measures.

Housing bonus

Perhaps the most discussed measure in terms of income taxes is the abolition of the housing bonus as of 1 January 2020. During the first ten years, the housing bonus resulted in a net benefit for the taxpayer of more than EUR 900. The abolition of the housing bonus was supposed to be compensated by the reduction of the registration duty for the purchase of a single owner-occupier dwelling. It is still unclear how this change will work out in practice and what the real (financial) consequences will be.

Tax deduction for service vouchers

In addition, the Flemish government has decided to reduce the tax deduction for service vouchers from 30% to 20%.

Greener vehicule taxation

Efforts will also continue to be made to make vehicle taxation greener, linking traffic taxation (cf. tax on vehicle registration) to the vehicle’s CO2 emissions.

Gift and inheritance taxes

There are a number of ‘limited’ changes in terms of gift and inheritance taxes, too. For non-registered gifts by bank transfer or through a Dutch notary public, the so-called suspect period will be extended from 3 years to 4 years. This means that, in future, one will have to live a year longer after making a gift to avoid payment of inheritance tax. The Flemish government clearly wants to encourage you to opt for a registered gift.

Besides that, you will also be able, from now on, to leave part of your estate to your friends at a favourable rate. However, there is as yet no overview of actual rates and/or amounts.

Activation

The Flemish government has resolutely opted for activation, too. They want to get as many people as possible into work and hope to achieve this by increasing the Flemish ‘job bonus’ and a more customised activation and employment trajectory for each jobseeker or ‘inactive’ person.

Should you have additional questions concerning the above, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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