In Belgium, ‘creative professionals’ can benefit from an advantageous tax rate for a portion of their earnings from their copyrighted work. For many years, this has included software developers, as well as journalists, photographers, etc., whether self-employed or working for a company.
Minister of Finance Vincent Van Peteghem (CD&V), Minister of Social Affairs Frank Vandenbroucke and Minister of the Economy Pierre-Yves Dermagne, are concerned about possible abuses of the system. Specifically, that the system may be being used by some people solely to take advantage of the tax breaks, and not in the spirit of the original intention.
They want to reconsider the extensive scope of the definition of which ‘creative professionals’ benefit from the tax-friendly scheme.
We received quite a few reactions from concerned members, so we met with the Cabinet Van Peteghem. Our findings from the meeting include:
The concerned Cabinets are at the beginning of the process to explore the issue.
There is not yet a concrete timing, but they would like to have draft legislation by Autumn 2021.
All options are ‘on the table’ right now: from excluding copyright on software, to adjusting it.
The government is aware of the importance of legal certainty and predictability for businesses and professionals.
Beltug will draft a Position on the various issues and concerns involved. If you are interested in being involved in developing the Position, please send an email to Danielle.