In case of indications of fraud, the investigation period will be extended by four years, so that the tax authorities have seven years to check your tax return. It is sufficient that there are indications of fraud, they do not have to be proven yet. The tax authorities must then inform you in writing. If the tax authorities can demonstrate that you have actually committed fraud and that this involves fraudulent intent or intent to harm, the assessment period will also be extended by four years. Evaded income from 2014 can therefore be taxed until December 31, 2021.

What if I do not agree with the tax statement?

You can submit a notice of objection within six months. This period starts to run from the third working day after the sending of the assessment notice. A notice of objection must be in writing, signed and addressed to the competent director. 

This is stated on the back of your assessment notice. Even if it is not mandatory, it is advisable to send a notice of objection by registered mail. The tax authorities will accept a scan of your notice of objection by e-mail or fax, but even then it is best to send a registered copy by post. You will receive a receipt afterwards. 

This way you know that your notice of objection has arrived, but it is not a recognition of the validity of your notice of objection, nor of the submission within the legal deadline. In your notice of objection, you must very precisely explain the elements with which you disagree and explain why you believe the assessment is incorrect. It is not enough to write that you do not agree and request a recalculation. So can a small business get a tax refund? The right calculator is there for you there.

A notice of objection extends the investigation and assessment period by a maximum of six months. The effective extension corresponds to the time elapsed between the submission of the notice of objection and the decision of the director.

Do I have to pay disputed taxes?

Yes, even if you file an objection, you still have to pay the tax due. Even if your objection is not yet clear. In your notice of objection, you can ask to determine the ‘undisputed part due’. That is the portion of the tax liability that is not disputed. The recipient will then only collect that part. By paying that part immediately, you avoid charging default interest with an annual interest rate of 7 percent. If you have doubts that you are right, you should also pay the disputed part immediately and then reclaim the amount. After all, if you were wrong, you would have to pay default interest. Conversely, if you paid too much tax and can recover part of it afterwards, you are entitled to moratorium interest (also 7 percent).

What if I am late for a notice of objection?

There is an alternative to an objection procedure: in professional jargon this is called the official exemption. The advantage is that you have five years to request rectification from the tax authorities. It is therefore still possible after the objection period has (long) expired. The disadvantage is that the procedure is only possible in a limited number of cases: after an excessive tax as a result of a material mistake (for example, writing or calculation error by the taxpayer or the administration), after double taxation (for example, income is both taxed in Belgium). as in a country with which Belgium has concluded a double tax treaty) or if new facts come to light (for example, your employer prepares improved pay slips).


Arthur Sweat

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *