Private Client news

Greenille by Laga Newsflashes

Overview of the latest Private Client news

ECJ issues very first decision on the European Succession Regulation (Kubicka case, C-218/16)

16 November 2017

The European Court of Justice ruled that a ‘vindicationslegaat’ should be accepted and executed in Germany without further formalities. Germany cannot convert the ‘vindicationslegaat’ into a ‘damnationslegaat’. 

Inheritance tax on participation clauses

13 October 2017

The participation clause is a very common clause in marital contracts of property distribution. It allows participation in the assets regardless of the assets' principal separation. A new pre-draft law by the Flemish Government introduces inheritance tax on these clauses. In Greenille by Laga's opinion, the Flemish Government introduces a discrimination against spouses married under the default regime.

Read more of Greenille by Laga's view.

Belgium implements the fourth anti-money laundering Directive - including UBO-register

10 October 2017

On 6 October 2017, a new law on anti-money laundering, counter terrorism financing and the use of cash was published in the Official Journal. The law transposes the fourth Directive on anti-money laundering (‘AML 4’) and the updated recommendations of the Financial Action Group into national law, while replacing the previous law of 1993 on anti-money laundering.

The most important change is the creation of a national Ultimate Beneficial Owner register (‘UBO-register’). Belgian companies and other legal entities must collect the necessary information on their beneficial owner(s), which is recorded in the UBO-register.

Usufruct on gifted assets

5 October 2017

Usufruct of the surviving spouse on gifted assets under the old and new inheritance law.

How do you make an indirect gift through bank transfer (from the donor’s account to the donee’s)? Greenille by Laga’s position

2 October 2017

One can make a gift through bank transfer whilst mentioning “gift” on the transfer document and whilst using e-mail.

Valuation of usufruct

27 September 2017

In the State Journal of 11 July 2017, the yearly statutory conversion tables of usufruct were published.

They apply as of 1 July 2017.

Income tax regime for interest received on foreign savings under ECJ spotlight

22 September 2017

Belgian income tax regime for interest received on foreign savings accounts may be contrary to EU Law.

New inheritance law from 1 September 2018

12 September 2017

The new inheritance law is effective September 2018 and also applies to donations before the law's entry into force. However one can opt for the old rules within the year. This choice has to be made before September 2018. Should one opt out or not?

Flemish Tax Authority’s position on a Dutch STAK

7 September 2017

The Flemish tax authority recently published its position on a Dutch Stichting-Administratiekantoor holding French real estate.

New bill reforming Belgian inheritance law published

1 September 2017

Find out about the most important aspects of this major reform.

Belgian Family Partnership and Real Estate

21 August 2017

Advance tax ruling of the Flemish Tax Authority on registration duties and inheritance tax on a family partnership and real estate published.

End of double taxation on French-source dividends for private investors 

9 August 2017

During recent years, the Belgian government has been increasing taxes on private investments and the income they generate. The default tax rate for dividend income has increased from 25 to 30%. The scope of the stock exchange tax has been broadened, the rates and maximum amounts of the stock exchange tax were increased several times. More recently, the government announced the introduction of a new tax on securities accounts of individuals residing in Belgium (see the newsflash on the Budget 2018 agreement).

Legislative change in Flanders will impact tax planning between spouses

9 August 2017

Flemish government announces legislative changes to tackle inheritance tax planning through matrimonial contracts.

Budget Agreement 2018 – Impact for High Net Worth Individuals and Families

3 August 2017

As you may have read in the press, the so-called Summer Agreement reached by the Federal Government last week, includes a number of tax measures potentially impacting high net worth individuals and families. Please find below an overview of these measures. For the measures put forward by the Corporate Tax Reform Agreement, reference is made to Deloitte’s Tax Reforms Hub.

New position of the Flemish Tax Administration regarding civil partnerships

15 May 2017

On 26 April 2017, the Flemish Tax Administration (Vlabel) published its new (additional) position regarding civil partnerships and the issue of split-registrations (usufruct – bare ownership). This position will enter into force on 1 June 2017 and applies to situations where parts in a civil partnership - in which securities and cash investments are held - are donated with reservation of usufruct (for example to the children).

Before 1 June 2017, the income of the civil partnership (i.e. dividends and interest) that is not distributed to the usufruct holder but is instead incorporated in the capital or reserved, is regarded as a gift. If no gift tax is paid, this income is taxable under Belgian inheritance tax if the usufruct holder passes away within 3 years after the donation.

As of 1 June 2017, Belgian inheritance tax is also due after this 3 year period if no Belgian gift tax was paid upon the split-registration.

There are however certain options to avoid this new Vlabel-position.

Ruling Commission’s Board temporarily not operational

5 May 2017

As covered by the press on the morning of 5 May 2017, the Ruling Commission’s Board is not operational until further notice.

This is due to a decision by the Council of State dd. 28 April 2017 annulling the appointment of the three French-speaking Board members, Matthieu Bataille, Serge Riga and Véronique Tai. This decision was triggered by an appeal introduced by José Vilain, a former member of the Board. This decision does not affect the appointment of the 3 Dutch-speaking Board members, Steven Vanden Berghe, Guy Giroulle and Luc Saliën.

Flemish Tax Administration targets donation of bare property

14 April 2016

Recently, the Flemish tax administration has published a new position based on which Flemish inheritance tax will apply to all tax free donations of securities or cash investments made with reservation of usufruct since 1 September 2013.

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