On 31 January, the General Guidelines of the Tax Agency’s Annual Tax and Customs Control Plan for 2022 were published in the Official State Gazette (BOE), which set out the main lines of action for the prevention and fight against fraud to be carried out by the Tax Administration.
This Tax Control Plan, in addition to reinforcing the actions developed in previous years, incorporates new areas of action. The most relevant new actions are briefly outlined below:
Assistance by AEAT agents at company headquarters
The aim is to reinforce the presence of AEAT agents at company headquarters, focusing on the so-called “nests of companies”, including coworking buildings and places where mail is simply received. The Tax Control Plan also establishes that visits will be made to certain groups of taxpayers by size or sector of activity in order to verify the data declared in situ.
True Ownership Database
As a result of the agreement signed between the State Tax Administration Agency and the General Council of Notaries, the Tax Agency will have access to data relating to the beneficial ownership of entities, among other data. In accordance with the Tax Control Plan, this data will be used to detect the beneficial ownership of opaque companies resident in Spain that own high-end residential real estate assets.
Checks on taxpayers with previous regularisations
The Tax Agency will focus on taxpayers who have been subject to previous regularisations in the past, and will carry out checks on them in order to verify whether a change in behaviour has been consolidated, or whether a tax risk pattern similar to the one that led to the first regularisation is being repeated, both for the taxpayer and for people in his or her family environment.
Verification of Negative Taxable Bases in Corporation Tax (IS)
Continuing with the special verification plan for 2021, companies will be monitored that repeatedly include in their tax returns Negative Taxable Bases (BINs) to be offset and deductions pending application in their corporate income tax returns.
Companies taxed under the special tax consolidation regime in the IS
In particular, those groups of companies that pay IS tax under the special tax consolidation regime with reduced turnover, limited number of companies and in which, in general, there are no intra-group transactions will be reviewed. Emphasis will be placed on checking the compensation of pre-consolidation BINs and the composition of the group, with the intention of excluding those companies that do not meet all the requirements to form part of the group.
The actions aimed at verifying the correct application of the VAT equivalence surcharge system, which began in 2020 and will continue in 2021, will continue, paying special attention to suppliers to verify that they pass on the surcharge. Likewise, from 2022 onwards, the correct compliance with the obligations entailed by the keeping of VAT books in the Immediate Supply of Information (SII) will be verified for affected taxable persons, and VAT taxable persons not affected by the SII will be offered the possibility of voluntarily keeping their books in the AEAT’s electronic headquarters at the time of preparing the quarterly VAT self-assessments.
Verification of large estates
Checks will continue to be carried out on large estates, carrying out joint reviews of individuals and their financial and corporate structures in order to detect personal income tax and corporate income tax contingencies. Therefore, the Tax Control Plan will focus on taxpayers considered as HNWI (“High Net Worth Individuals“) or UHNWI (“Ultra High Net Worth Individuals“).
Tax control relating to foreign tax residence and use of new technologies
Due to the numerous relocations of Spanish tax residents with high purchasing power, the Tax Agency is once again devoting a whole section to the control of effective tax residence abroad, as was the case in the 2021 Tax Control Plan. In accordance with article 9 of Law 35/2006, of 28 November, on Personal Income Tax, a taxpayer will be understood to have his or her habitual residence in Spanish territory when any of the following circumstances apply:
- That the taxpayer spends more than 183 days during the calendar year in Spanish territory, with sporadic absences being counted in this calculation, unless the taxpayer can prove their tax residence in another country.
- That the main core or base of his activities or economic interests, directly or indirectly, is located in Spain.
- It will be presumed that the taxpayer has his habitual residence in Spanish territory when the non-legally separated spouse and his minor children reside in Spain and are dependent on him.
Interposition of companies to channel income of individuals
The focus will also be placed on structures consisting of the interposition of companies to channel the income of individuals and ownership of assets and rights not assigned to economic activities, a common practice in sectors providing professional services, as well as by artists and sportsmen and women.