Author: Courts of Italy

Italy vs Quaker Italia Srl, November 2022, Supreme Administrative Court, Case No 34728/2022

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Quaker Italia Srl is a non-exclusive distributor of Quaker products in Italy – lubricating oils and greases. It also carries out a minor manufacturing activity. An assessment was issued by the tax authorities in 2012 regarding the remuneration received for the distribution activities in FY 2007. The Tax authorities considered that the documentation provided by […]

Italy vs BASF Italia s.p.a., June 2022, Supreme Court, Cases No 19728/2022

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The German BASF group is active in the chemical industry and has subsidiaries all over the world including Italy. In FY 2006 BASF Italia s.p.a. was served with two notices of assessment by the tax authorities. The tax assessments formulated three findings. 1. non-deductibility of the cancellation deficit – arising from the merger by incorporation […]

Italy vs Mauser S.p.A., February 2022, Supreme Court, Case No 6283/2022

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Following an audit, Mauser S.p.A. received four notices of assessment relating to the tax periods from 2004 to 2007. These notices contested, in relation to all tax periods, the elusive purpose of a financing operation of Mauser S.p.A. by the non-resident parent company, as it was aimed at circumventing the non-deductibility of interest expense pursuant […]

Italy vs Arnoldo Mondadori Editore SpA , February 2022, Supreme Court, Cases No 3380/2022

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Since Arnoldo Mondadori Editore SpA’s articles of association prevented it from issuing bonds, financing of the company had instead been archived via an arrangement with its subsidiary in Luxembourg, Mondadori International S.A. To that end, the subsidiary issued a bond in the amount of EUR 350 million, which was subscribed for by US investors. The […]

Italy vs BenQ Italy SRL, March 2021, Corte di Cassazione, Sez. 5 Num. 1374 Anno 2022

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BenQ Italy SRL is part of a multinational group headed by the Taiwanese company BenQ Corporation that sells and markets technology products, consumer electronics, computing and communications devices. BenQ Italy’s immediate parent company was a Dutch company, BenQ Europe PV. Following an audit the tax authorities issued a notice of assessment for FY 2003 in […]

Italy vs Burckert Contromatic Italiana S.p.A., November 2021, Corte di Cassazione, Sez. 5 Num. 1417 Anno 2022

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Burkert Contromatic Italiana s.p.a. is engaged in sale and services of fluid control systems. The italian company is a subsidiary of the German Bürkert Group. Following a tax audit, the Italian tax authorities issued a notice of assessment for FY 2007 on the grounds that the cost resulting from the transactions with its parent company […]

Italy vs “VAT ALFA S.p.A.”, December 2021, Tax Ruling of the Italian Revenue Agency, Case No 884/2021

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A ruling was issued by the Italian Revenue Service on the following question on the VAT treatment of Transfer Pricing adjustments. 1) an internal CUP (Compared Uncontrolled Price) methodology is used, on the basis of which, net of appropriate adjustments, the price of goods charged by ALFA S.p.A. to its EU affiliates is compared with […]

Italy vs Pompea S.p.A., October 2021, Supreme Court, Case No 27636/2021

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This case deals with a non-interest bearing intragroup loan granted by Pompea S.p.A. to a foreign subsidiary and deductibility of interest expenses incurred by Pompea S.p.A. to obtain the funding needed to grant this loan to the subsidiary. The company was of the opinion that interest free inter-company loans were not covered by the Italien arm’s length […]

Italy vs NEOPOST ITALIA s.r.l. (QUADIENT ITALY s.r.l.), September 2021, Supreme Court, Case No 25025/2021

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Neopost Italia s.r.l. had paid service fees and royalties to its French parent. Following an audit, deductions for these intra-group transactions was adjusted by the tax authorities due to non compliance with the arm’s length principle and lack of documentation. However, for the purpose of determining an arm’s length remuneration a benchmark study had been […]

Italy vs INTERVET PRODUCTIONS SRL, January 2021, Corte di Cassazione, Case No 22539/2021

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Intervet Productions SRL, a company resident in Italy, manufactures veterinary medicines and supplements. The Italian tax authorities issued a notice of assessment, relating to the 2004 tax year. In that notice, the tax authorities ascertained the inconsistency of the transfer prices concerning the sale of certain goods to a related party in Germany. For the […]

Italy vs TMC Italia SpA, June 2021, Supreme Court, Case No 18436/2021

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TMC Italy SpA is a parent company which provides services and support to the commercial production activities of its affiliated companies based in foreign countries (Spain, Czech Republic, Germany, France, Israel, Brazil, United Kingdom). The costs of providing these intra-group services had been allocated between the related parties based on the number and salary of […]

Italy vs “Fruit old s.a.s”, March 2021, Supreme Court, Case No 8176 – R.G.N. 8952/2013, 2021-25

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Fruit old s.a.s was active in wholesale of fruit and vegetables. In 2003 it purchased products at a price higher than the market price from another company owned by the same partners, Fruit new s.r.l., and resold them at a price lower than the purchase price. Both companies were domiciled in Italy. Following these transactions […]

Italy vs E.I. S.r.l., February 2021, Regional Tax Commission, Case No 12/02/2021 n. 546/9

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Transactions had taken place between E.I. S.r.l. and a related Spanish company, S. SA, where the pricing had been determined based on the cost plus method. An assessment was issued by the tax authorities on the basis of a “comparable” transactions (internal CUP) between the E.I. S.r.l. and an independent third company where the price […]

Italy vs Vibac S.p.A., January 2021, Corte di Cassazione, Case No 1232/2021

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Transactions had taken place between Vibac S.p.A. and related foreign group companies related to use of trademarks and royalty/license payments. It was up to the Vibac S.p.A. to demonstrate that the remuneration received from related companies for use of the trademark of the products had been at arm’s length. According to the company the royalty […]

Italy vs “Plastic Pipes s.p.a.”, January 2021, Supreme Court, Case 230-2021

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Plastic Pipes s.p.a. produces and sells flexible plastic pipes, via foreign subsidiaries, to which it supplies the product to be resold to foreign customers and it operates abroad, selling the product directly to customers, also in foreign countries where it has a subsidiary. The tax authorities had issued a notice of assessment for FY 2006 […]

Italy vs Gulf Shipping & Trading Corporation Ltd Inc, October 2020, Supreme Court, Case No 21693/2020

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The Italian Revenue Agency had notified to Gulf Shipping & Trading Corporation Ltd Inc. several notices of assessment, relating to the tax years 1999 to 2006, contesting undeclared taxable income, having ascertained that the aforesaid company had a permanent establishment in Italy through which it traded in construction materials. The company had lodged separate appeals […]

Italy vs Spazio Immobiliare 2000 s.r.l., September 2020, Supreme Court, Cases No 20823/2020

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The facts underlying the notice of assessment are undisputed: a) Casa di Cura Santa Rita s.p.a. grants a free loan to Spazio Immobiliare 2000 s.r.l.; b) the latter company, substantially lacking its own means and wholly controlled by the former, uses the parent company’s loan in full to purchase certain assets; c) said assets are […]

Italy vs Stiga s.p.a., formerly Global Garden Products Italy s.p.a., July 2020, Supreme Court, Case No 14756.2020

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The Italian Tax Authorities held that the withholding tax exemption under the European Interest and Royalty Directive did not apply to interest paid by Stiga s.p.a. to it’s parent company in Luxembourg. The interest was paid on a loan established in connection with a merger leverage buy out transaction. According to the Tax Authorities the […]

Italy vs SIOT S.p.A. June 2020, Cassazione, Case no Sez. 5 Num. 11837

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This case concerns Società Italiana per l’Oleodotto Transalpino Spa (S.I.O.T.) – , which operates the transalpine oil pipeline that crosses Italy, Austria and Germany, with the Austrian subsidiary T.O.O. GmbH and with the German subsidiary D.T.O. GmbH, belonging to the same group of companies. The Italian tax authorities had issued four notices of assessment for […]

Italy vs “Lender” SpA, February 2020, Regional Tax Tribunal for Umbria, Case No 18/02/2020 n. 56/01

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An Italian parent company “Lender SpA” had granted interest free loans to foreign subsidiaries. Lender SpA had also paid subsidiaries for services rendered. The Italian tax authorities held that interest should be paid on the loans and that the company had not sufficiently demonstrated the conditions to justify the deductibility of costs of services. The […]

Italy vs Rohm and Haas Italia s.r.l, February 2020, Supreme Court, Case No 3599 13/02/2020

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At issue was deduction of VAT on purported costs incurred for intra-group services, which had been deemed non-deductible for tax as well as VAT purposes by the Italien Tax Authorities, as the taxpayer had not been able to prove the effectiveness and relevance of these services. The Supreme Court found that in order for intra-group […]

Italy vs HSBC Milano, September 2019, Supreme Court, Case No 23355

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HBP is a company resident in the United Kingdom, which also carries on banking business in Italy through its Milan branch (‘HSBC Milano’), which, for income tax purposes, qualifies as a permanent establishment (‘PE’ or ‘branch’) and grants credit facilities to Italian companies and industrial groups, including (from 1996) Parmalat Spa. HBP brought separate actions […]

Italy vs J.T.G.P. spa, September 2019, Lombardi Regional Tribunal, Case No 928/20/2019

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The Italian company J.T.G.P spa, a subsidiary in a multinational pharma group ALPHA J, had recorded operating losses for fiscal years 1997 to 2013, where, at a consolidated level, the group had showed positive results. According to the Italian tax authorities, the reason why the Italian company was still in operation was due to the […]

Italy vs Fashionbox, January 2019, Supreme Court, Case No 14609

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The Italien tax authorities had issued an assessment against Fashion box s.p.a., adjusting revenues for FY 2004 with the sum of EUR 988,888.27, related to transfer pricing transactions between the taxpayer and foreign subsidiaries of Fashion Box Group s.p.a. located in various European countries. In particular, the tax authorities pointed out that sales to the […]

Italy vs Agusta Holding BV, May 2019, Supreme Court, Case No 14527/2019

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A Dutch company, Agusta Holding BV, submitted a request regarding the reimbursement of withholding tax paid in Italy by its Italian subsidiary on dividends distributed for the fiscal year 2001. The request was initially accepted and the withholding tax paid back. But after an audit, the reimbursement was then challenged. The tax authorities found that […]

Italy vs T. SpA, January 2019, Regional Tax Commission, Case No 25/01/2019 n. 376/3

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It is up to the Tax Administration to prove the existence of transactions between related companies with clear discrepancies compared to transactions of the same kind on an independent market, while the taxpayer bears the burden of proving that the transactions took place for market values to be considered normal. This is the division of […]

Italy vs Dolce & Gabbana, December 2018, Supreme Court, Case no 33234/2018

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Italien fashion group, Dolce & Gabbana, had moved ownership of valuable intangibles to a subsidiary established for that purpose in Luxembourg. The Italian Revenue Agency found the arrangement to be wholly artificial and set up only to avoid Italien taxes and to benefit from the privileged tax treatment in Luxembourg. The Revenue Agency argued that […]

Italy vs BI S.r.l, November 2018, Tax Tribunal of Milano, Case no. 5445/3/2018

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The Italian tax authorities had issued an assessment against a local distribution company of a multinational group, where the transfer pricing analysis conducted by the taxpayer had been disregarded. The tax authorities, carried out a new benchmark analysis based on the transactional net margin method (“TNMM”) and adjusted the company’s profitability to the median. Judgement […]

Italy vs Haier Europe Trading Srl , November 2018, Supreme Court, Case No 28337/2018

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Haier Europe Trading Srl, an Italien subsidiary of the Chinese Haier group (active within home appliances and consumer electronics), challenged an assessment for FY 2007, with which the tax authorities had recovered for taxation the difference with respect to the normal value in relation to transactions of goods with other companies of the group not […]

Italy vs “VAT Group X”, November 2018, Tax Ruling of the Italian Revenue Agency, Case No 60

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A ruling was issued by the Italian Revenue Service on the following question on the VAT treatment of Transfer Pricing adjustments. “Alfa represents that it is part of a multinational Group (hereinafter, the “Group”). The Group is implementing a new integrated development plan, aimed at the joint creation of products and platforms necessary for the […]

Italy vs Recordati Industria Chimica e Farmaceutica S.p.A, September 2017, Supreme Court, Case No 20805

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Recordati Industria Chimica e Farmaceutica S.p.A had been issued an assessment by the tax authorities for FY 2003 on various issues related to transfer pricing. Recordati Industria Chimica e Farmaceutica S.p.A. disagreed with the assessment and brought the case to court. The Regional Tax Commission of Lombardy (Ctr) issued a decision where it partially annulled […]

Italy vs Edison spa., Supreme Court, June 2016, No. 13387

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The Italien Supreme Court held that intra-group interest-free loans violates article 110(7); the Italien arm’s length provisions. Excerpt from the Judgement “…of the facts contained in the judgment under appeal, that the payments made by the parent company Edison spa to the foreign subsidiary Tanti Investimentos S.A, even though entitled ‘payments on account of future […]

Italy vs Edison s.p.a. April 2016, Supreme Court no 7493

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The Italien company had qualified a funding arrangement in an amount of Lira 500 billion classified by the parties as a non-interest-bearing contribution reserved for a future capital increase. Judgement of the Supreme Court The Italian Supreme Court found that intra-group financing agreements are subject to transfer pricing legislation and that non-interest-bearing financing is generally […]

Italy vs F. S.p.A., February 2016, Regional Tax Commission, Case No 02/02/2016 n. 258/11

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The Provincial Tax Commission had upheld F. S.p.A.’s appeal and set aside the assessment made by the tax authorities, both because it had failed to prove tax avoidance and because it had used the TNMM (Transactional Net Margin Method) method, which the tax authorities advised against in favour of the CUP (Comparable Uncontrolled Price) method, […]

Italy vs. ILPEA SPA, July 2015, Supreme Court 15298

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This case is about an Italian company, ILPEA S.p.A, transactions with its US subsidiary. The company stated that there were substantial difference between the products sold to its subsidiary in the United States and the benchmark transactions considered by the Tax Administration – quality of the products, volumes of sales, terms of sale. These differences […]

Italy vs Computer Associates SPA, February 2013, Supreme Court no 4927

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The Italian tax authorities had challenged the inter-company royalty paid by Computer Associates SPA, 30% as per contract, to it’s American parent company, registered in Delaware. According to the authorities a royalty of 7% percentage was determined to be at arm’s length and an assessment for FY 1999 was issued, where deduction of the difference […]