Category: Legality – Legitimacy – Constitutional

Canada vs Dow Chemicals, April 2022, Federal Court of Appeal, Case No 2022 FCA 70

Canada vs Dow Chemicals, April 2022, Federal Court of Appeal, Case No 2022 FCA 70

This appeal and cross-appeal arise as a result of the response provided by the Tax Court of Canada to a question submitted under Rule 58 of the Tax Court of Canada Rules (General Procedure), SOR/90-688a. The question was: Where the Minister of National Revenue has exercised her discretion pursuant to subsection 247(10) of the Income Tax Act (“ITA”) to deny a taxpayer’s request for a downward transfer pricing adjustment, is that a decision falling outside the exclusive original jurisdiction granted to the Tax Court of Canada under section 12 of the Tax Court of Canada Act and section 171 of the ITA? This question arose in the context of the appeal commenced by Dow Chemical Canada ULC (Dow) in relation to the reassessment of its 2006 taxation year. The Tax Court (2020 TCC 139) provided the following answer to this question: The Court has determined ... Continue to full case
Italy vs Burckert Contromatic Italiana S.p.A., November 2021, Corte di Cassazione, Sez. 5 Num. 1417 Anno 2022

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

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 (incorporated under Swiss law) were higher than the arms length price of these transactions. The company challenged the tax assessment, arguing that the analysis carried out by the Office had been superficial, both because it had examined accounting documents relating to tax years other than the one under examination (2007), and because the Office, in confirming that the Transactional Net Margin Method (TNMM) was the most reliable method, in order to verify whether the margin obtained by the company corresponded to the arm’s length value, had carried out a comparability ... Continue to full case
Belgium, December 2021, Constitutional Court, Case No 184/2021

Belgium, December 2021, Constitutional Court, Case No 184/2021

By a notice of December 2020, the Court of Appeal of Brussels referred the following question for a preliminary ruling by the Constitutional Court : “ Does article 207, second paragraph, ITC (1992), as it applies, read together with article 79 ITC (1992), in the interpretation that it also applies to abnormal or gratuitous advantages obtained by a Belgian company from a foreign company, violate articles 10, 11 and 172 of the Constitution? “. The Belgian company “D.W.B.”, of which Y.S. and R.W. were the managers, was set up on 4 October 2006 by the Dutch company “W.”. On 25 October 2006, the latter also set up the Dutch company “D.W.” On 9 November 2006, bv “W.” sold its shareholdings in a number of subsidiaries of the D.W. group to its subsidiary nv ” D.W. “. It was agreed that 20 % of the selling ... Continue to full case
Hungary vs G.K. Ktf, December 2021, Court of Appeals, Case No. Kfv.V.35.306/2021/9

Hungary vs G.K. Ktf, December 2021, Court of Appeals, Case No. Kfv.V.35.306/2021/9

G.K. Ktf was a subsidiary of a company registered in the United Kingdom. On 29 December 2010 G.K. Ktf entered into a loan agreement with a Dutch affiliate, G.B. BV, under which G.B. BV, as lender, granted a subordinated unsecured loan of HUF 3 billion to G.K. Ktf. Interest was set at a fixed annual rate of 11.32%, but interest was only payable when G.K. Ktf earned a ‘net income’ from its activities. The maturity date of the loan was 2060. The loan was used by G.K. Ktf to repay a debt under a loan agreement concluded with a Dutch bank in 2006. The bank loan was repaid in 2017/2018. The interest paid by G.K. Ktf under the contract was deducted as an expense of HUF 347,146,667 in 2011 and HUF 345,260,000 in 2012. But, in accordance with Dutch tax law – the so called ... Continue to full case
Hungary vs VSSB V. Service Center Budapest Zrt., December 2021, Court of Appeals, Case No. Kfv.V.35.184/2021/16

Hungary vs VSSB V. Service Center Budapest Zrt., December 2021, Court of Appeals, Case No. Kfv.V.35.184/2021/16

The VSSB Group provided liquidity to the group members by means of a cash-pool. Under the cash pool agreement, short-term and longer-term multi-currency financing transactions were carried out, including the applicant as a member of the group; the intermediary was the group member VSSB V. Service Center Budapest Zrt. (‘VSSB’). At the end of each month, the balances of the group members’ short positions (cash pool) with monthly settlement were transferred to the long term loan between the holding company, VSSB Group Plc. The members of the cash pool have either been continuously depositing funds or drawing on funds within the group. The Hungarian Service Center only deposited funds throughout the period under examination and had received a fixed rate of interest on the deposits. The funds deposited by the members of the group were transferred to the main account of the VSSB Group and ... Continue to full case
Canada vs Bank of Nova Scotia, October 2021, Tax Court, Case No. 2021 TCC 70

Canada vs Bank of Nova Scotia, October 2021, Tax Court, Case No. 2021 TCC 70

In 2013 and 2014, the Canadian tax authorities conducted the Transfer Pricing Audit of Bank of Nova Scotia. Prior to issuing tax assessment letters for FY 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010, the Bank entered into a settlement agreement with the Minister of National Revenue in respect of the Transfer Pricing Audit. The settlement agreement provided for the Minister to reassess the Bank to include certain amounts in its income as transfer pricing adjustments in its 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014 Taxation Years. In this regard, the agreement was to result in an increase of the Bank’s taxable income for the 2006 Taxation Year of $54,916,616. The Bank then wrote to the Minister to carry back $54,000,000 of non-capital loss that arose in the Bank’s taxation year ended October 31, 2008 to its 2006 Taxation Year in order to offset the ... Continue to full case
Spain vs Comeresa Prensa S.L.U., September 2021, Audiencia Nacional, Case No SAN 3857/2021 - ECLI:ES:AN:2021:3857

Spain vs Comeresa Prensa S.L.U., September 2021, Audiencia Nacional, Case No SAN 3857/2021 – ECLI:ES:AN:2021:3857

VOCENTO, S.A. is the parent company of a multinational publishing group. The registered office of VOCENTO, S.A. is in Bizkaia and it is subject to the regulations of this Territory regarding Corporate Income Tax. COMERESA PRENSA, S.L.U. is a wholly-owned subsidiary of VOCENTO and holds most of the shares in regional press publishing companies held by the Group of which VOCENTO, S.A. is the parent company, with the exception of the publishing companies with registered offices in the territories of the Autonomous Community of the Basque Country. In 2015, COMERESA PRENSA, S.L.U. was issued a tax assessment related to pricing of intra-group services. According to the tax authorities Comeresa Prensa had provided certain services to its parent companies -directly and indirectly- for no consideration whatsoever. Judgement of the Audiencia Nacional The decision of the tax authorities was set aside on formal grounds. “It is appropriate ... Continue to full case
Liechtenstein vs D AG (formerly A AG), August 2021, Constitutional Court (Staatsgerichtshof), Case No 2021/029

Liechtenstein vs D AG (formerly A AG), August 2021, Constitutional Court (Staatsgerichtshof), Case No 2021/029

In the course of an Austrian tax audit related party transactions between C GmbH, Austria, and D AG (formerly A AG), Liechtenstein, could only be traced on the basis of balance sheets and tax returns of A AG, Liechtenstein. In January 2019, the Austrian Federal Ministry of Finance (BMF), Vienna, therefore submitted a request for information to the Liechtenstein Tax Administration based on Article 25a of the DTA between Liechtenstein and Austria, concluded on 5 November 1969 and in particular as amended by the Protocol concluded on 29 January 2013, LGBl. 2013 No. 433. The ***-group is active in the field of online and direct marketing. The head office of the *** Group is in Vaduz. All intangible assets are owned by D AG in Liechtenstein and include all data (more than 100 million), IP and trademark rights, the servers, essential software, domains and know-how ... Continue to full case
Poland vs R.B.P. (P.) Sp. z o.o.., August 2021, Supreme Administrative Court, Case No II FSK 3830/18

Poland vs R.B.P. (P.) Sp. z o.o.., August 2021, Supreme Administrative Court, Case No II FSK 3830/18

The company is a producer of household chemicals and belongs to the R. B. (“the Group”), which is active in the manufacture and sale of consumer products in the home, health and hygiene products industry. The Company has entered into supply agreements for the goods it produces with Group companies. On the basis of the agreements, the Applicant sells goods produced by it to entities of the Group indicated by R. A. h. Companies and to R.B. [E.] B.V. The remuneration of the Polish company was determined based on a target margin – and if the profits were below or above the target margin, an invoice was issued subtracting or adding income to arrive at the target income. The tax authorities held that the quarterly “Transfer Pricing-adjustment” was not a transfer in regards of VAT. The company then filed a request for a individual interpretation ... Continue to full case
Canada vs Amdocs CMS Inc., July 2021, Federal Court, Case No 2021 FC 707

Canada vs Amdocs CMS Inc., July 2021, Federal Court, Case No 2021 FC 707

An employee (tax manager) of Amdocs Inc did not cooperate with the Canada Revenue Agency during several audits of the company and did not inform his superior about the audits. The audits resulted in tax reassessments for FY 2012 – 2014. The reassessment concerning FY 2012 resulted in income tax payable by $3,353,906, but by the time the employee informed his superior of the reassessment in 2019, Amdocs was time barred from objecting by virtue of the limitation periods. With respect to the assessments for FY 2013 and 2014 the limitation period for objections had not yet elapsed. Amdocs Inc filed an appeal with the court in regards of the denied access to object on the assessment for FY 2012. Judgement of the Federal Court The court dismissed the appeal of Amdocs and decided in favor of the tax authorities. Excerpts “…I find the Minister’s ... Continue to full case
Netherlands vs "Related Party B.V.", July 2021, District Court, Case No ECLI:NL:RBGEL:2021:3382

Netherlands vs “Related Party B.V.”, July 2021, District Court, Case No ECLI:NL:RBGEL:2021:3382

In 2013 “Related Party B.V” entered into an agreement with “X BV” for the provision of transportation- and support services for oil and gas. The Dutch tax authority suspected that the parties were affiliated within the meaning of Section 8b of the Corporate Income Tax Act 1969. Decision of Court The Court decided in favor of the tax authority. Based on the documents in the case, the tax authority rightly suspected that there was an affiliation within the meaning of Section 8b of the Corporate Income Tax Act. The tax authority was therefore entitled to reasonably issue information decisions for the Vpb for 2013 to 2016 inclusive. Nemo Tenetur Principle – self incrimination “Related Party B.V” argued that it’s right not to incriminate itself had been violated because the information decision(s) had been issued to examine the possibility of imposing a fine. In this regard, ... Continue to full case
Italy vs TMC Italia SpA, June 2021, Supreme Court, Case No 18436/2021

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

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 employees in FY 2008 and 2009. The tax administration issued an assessment where the allocation was instead be based on turnover – due to data supporting better correlation. The Court of first instance held in favour of the tax authorities. This decision was appealed by TMC to the Supreme Court. Judgement of the Court The Court dismissed the appeal of TMC in its entirety and decided in favour of the tax authorities. Excerpts: “CTR considered legitimate and correct the use of the method of allocation of the profits of the ... Continue to full case
Russia vs PJSC Vimpelcom-Communications, May 2021, Arbitration Court of Moscow, Case No. A40-36350/21-140-1024

Russia vs PJSC Vimpelcom-Communications, May 2021, Arbitration Court of Moscow, Case No. A40-36350/21-140-1024

PJSC Vimpelcom-Communications submitted to the tax authority a revised notice of controlled transactions for 2017, under which contract numbers for 68 transactions were adjusted, including an agreement with a foreign counterparty Veon Wholensale Services B.V. (Netherlands) for the provision of agency-services (the “Controlled Transactions”), and information was also provided on another transaction with another foreign counterparty. Based on the revised notification, the Russian Tax Authorities issued a decision on 29 December 2020 to conduct an audit with respect to pricing of the Company’s Controlled Transactions for 2017. The Company held that the tax authority’s decision as unlawful. The Company insisted that the Russian Tax Authorities had missed the two-year deadline for issuing a decision on the appointment of an audit, and therefore lost its right to conduct a price audit in respect of the 2017-transactions in question. Judgement of the Arbitration Court The court dismissed ... Continue to full case
Hungary vs "GW Logistics", March 2021, Appeals Court Curia, Case No. Kfv.I.35.320/2020/6

Hungary vs “GW Logistics”, March 2021, Appeals Court Curia, Case No. Kfv.I.35.320/2020/6

GW Logistics was engaged in the activity of transport management (shipping and Logistics) and a member og the German Gebrüder Weiss Group. The tax authorities carried out an audit of the tax returns for the years 2010-2011 and increased GW Logistics’s taxable profit by HUF 189 159 000 for 2010 and by HUF 53 373 000 for 2011, because of the difference between the consideration paid by the applicant for related party transactions and the open market price. Since GW Logistics had not prepared transfer pricing documentation for its maritime transport activities in 2010 and 2011, the tax authority imposed a default fine of HUF 1 500 000. The tax authority applied the TNMM method to determine the arm’s length profitability. In the course of the audit, the tax authority informed GW Logistics that the data provided were not suitable for obtaining transaction-level profitability information ... Continue to full case
Germany vs A... GmbH, March 2021, BUNDESVERFASSUNGSGERICHT, Case No 2 BvR 1161/19

Germany vs A… GmbH, March 2021, BUNDESVERFASSUNGSGERICHT, Case No 2 BvR 1161/19

A GmbH provided funding in the form of a clearing account to its Belgian subsidiary. The account was unsecured and carried an interest of 6% p.a. In 2005, A GmbH and the Belgian company agreed on a debt write-off which was deducted for tax purposes. The tax authorities issued an assessment where the write-off was denied as a tax deductible expense. According to the tax authorities, independent third parties would have agreed on some kind of security. The lack thereof was a violation of the arm’s length principle. A GmbH brought the assessment to court. The Federal Fiscal Court (I R 73/16) found the assessment of the tax authorities to be lawful. This decision was then appealed to the Constitutional Court by  A GmbH, alleging violation of the general principle of equality as well as a violation of its fundamental procedural right to the lawful ... Continue to full case
Peru vs. Telefonica, February 2021, Supreme Court, Case No 210/2021

Peru vs. Telefonica, February 2021, Supreme Court, Case No 210/2021

Telefónica have been in a long lasting tax dispute with SUNAT – the Peruvian tax authorities – over various tax and transfer pricing issues, and interest on tax debt has been accumulating. Telefonica requests the non-application of article 33 of the Tax Code with regard to the late payment interest on the tax debt related to income tax for the years 2000 and 2001, with respect to the periods that exceed the deadlines set forth in articles 142, 150 and 156 of the aforementioned code. Judgement of the Constitutional Court In this Judgement, the Constitutional Court declares Telefónica’s claim for violation of the right to reasonable time and ORDERS the recalculation of the default interest without considering those generated in excess of the legal time limit established to resolve the dispute. Although the purpose of late payment interest is to encourage the payment of taxes, ... Continue to full case
Belgium vs ENGIE CC cv, January 2021, Supreme Court, Case No F.18.0140.N

Belgium vs ENGIE CC cv, January 2021, Supreme Court, Case No F.18.0140.N

ENGIE CC granted a loan to one of its group companies (Electrabel Nederland Holding bv). In 2005 Electrabel Holding bv repaid the loan prematurely and paid – as contractually stipulated – a reinvestment fee of EUR 5,611,906.11 to the plaintiff. Following a tax audit in 2008, the tax authorities established that an incorrect interest rate had been used and that the reinvestment fee should only have been EUR 2,853,070.69, hence EUR 2,758,835.42 was overpaid. The tax authorities issued an assessment to ENGIE, according to which the excess amount would be taxed as an abnormal or gratuitous advantage. ENGIE then took the unilateral initiative to repay the excess amount to Electrabel Nederland Holding bv. On that basis ENGIE contested the qualification of the excessive part of the reinvestment fee as an abnormal or gratuitous advantage, since it would have been an error and therefore an undue payment ... Continue to full case
South Africa vs ABC (PTY) LTD, January 2021, Tax Court of Johannesburg, Case No IT 14305

South Africa vs ABC (PTY) LTD, January 2021, Tax Court of Johannesburg, Case No IT 14305

ABC Ltd is in the business of manufacturing, importing, and selling chemical products. It has a catalyst division that is focused on manufacturing and selling catalytic converters (catalysts) which is used in the abatement of harmful exhaust emissions from motor vehicles. To produce the catalysts, applicant requires, inter alia, some metals known as the Precious Group of Metals (PGMs). It purchases the PGMs from a Swiss entity (“the Swiss Entity”). The PGMs are liquified and mixed with other chemicals to create coating for substrates, all being part of the manufacturing process. Once the manufacturing is complete, the catalysts are sold to customers in South Africa known as the original equipment manufacturers (OEMs). ABC Ltd and the Swiss Entity are connected parties as defined in section 1 of the ITA. Following an audit carried out in 2014 the revenue service issued an assessment for FY 2011 ... Continue to full case
Canada vs Dow Chemical Canada ULC. Dec 2020, Tax Court, Case No. 2020 TCC 139

Canada vs Dow Chemical Canada ULC. Dec 2020, Tax Court, Case No. 2020 TCC 139

This decision is about the jurisdiction of the Tax Court of Canada, or perhaps more accurately about the scope of an appeal of an assessment. It arises in the context of an appeal by Dow Chemical Canada ULC of a reassessment of its 2006 taxation year. The reassessment increased Dow Chemical’s income under the transfer pricing provisions in section 247 of the Income Tax Act. In reassessing Dow Chemical for its 2006 and 2007 taxation years, the tax authorities had increased Dow Chemical’s income in respect of certain transactions with non-residents to which Dow Chemical is related. The authorities initially indicated that the transfer pricing provisions also would result in a downward adjustment to Dow Chemical’s income in those taxation years in respect of another transaction. However, the most recent reassessment of Dow Chemical’s 2006 taxation year did not reflect the downward adjustment, although the ... Continue to full case
Colombia vs Taxpayer, November 2020, The Constitutional Court, Sentencia No. C-486/20

Colombia vs Taxpayer, November 2020, The Constitutional Court, Sentencia No. C-486/20

A Colombian taxpayer had filed an unconstitutionality complaint against Article 70 (partial) of Law 1819 of 2016, “Whereby a structural tax reform is adopted, mechanisms for the fight against tax evasion and avoidance are strengthened, and other provisions are enacted.” The Constitutional Court ruled that the Colombian GAAR legislation was not unconstitutional. Click here for English translation Click here for other translation (1) Corte Constitucional - Sentencia C-480 del 19 de noviembre de 2020 ... Continue to full case