Refund requests of Belgian WHT filed by non-residents: administrative guidance published

Written by Olivier Hermand 18 August 2017


The Belgian tax administration has just published on its website a guidance (FR/NL) related to refund requests of Belgian WHT on dividends, interest and royalties filed by non-resident taxpayers.

In particular, the Belgian tax administration has made a distinction between refund requests of Belgian WHT based on Double Tax Treaties and those based on Belgian domestic law. In the latter case, another distinction is made between refund requests of Belgian WHT on dividends and Belgian WHT on interest.

Further, the Belgian tax administration has provided a separate guidance for refund requests of Belgian WHT on dividends based on (i) the domestic exemption reserved for ‘foreign pension funds’ (art. 106, §2 of the RD/ITC) and on (ii) the so-called ‘Tate & Lyle-reduced WHT’ rate (art. 269/1 of the ITC).

Content-wise, the Belgian tax administration specifies which form should be used (for refund requests based on Double Tax Treaties) and which supporting information should be provided. In this respect, we note that, depending on the circumstances, refund requests concerning amounts above 100.000 EUR are subject to additional requirements. This is a welcome development since, so far, the official guidance on this matter was rather limited.

Takeaway

Taxpayers concerned should consider those requirements when filing a refund request of Belgian WHT. We also note that some of these requirements might raise difficulties and / or could be criticized (e.g. confirmation of the absence of impairments on the shares in case of refund request based on the ‘Tate & Lyle-reduced WHT’ rate).

 

With a strong experience and expertise on this matter, PwC can of course provide assistance in this framework, ranging from pure compliance services to operational implementation and high-end tax advices.