There has been uncertainty if those liable to corporate income tax (CIT) may apply a tax relief to barter contracts made with sports clubs.
The relief is available in the form of a deduction from income for 50% of tax costs incurred to provide medical services to sports clubs in exchange for advertising.
The sponsoring relief allows CIT payers to deduct 50% of tax costs incurred on sporting activities, among other things. The law gives examples of such costs, including costs to fund certain activities of non-profit sports clubs, such as training programmes.
There has been uncertainty whether this relief applies to barter contracts with sports clubs. The uncertainty was resolved in a private tax ruling issued on 16 March 2023 (ref. 0111-KDIB1-2.4010.28.2023.2.EJ). The case involved a limited partnership planning to enter into a barter contract with a non-profit sports club to provide it with medical services in exchange for promotion and advertising services from the club. The services of both parties would be of equal value. According to the ruling authority, the promotion and advertising services will help the partnership gain an increased recognition, which means more patients and higher revenues. As such, these costs will fall within the definition of tax costs. The authority considered that the partnership’s medical services for club athletes will assist in maintaining or improving their health and as such will enable them to take part in training programmes, thus contributing to better conditions for sporting activities. In consequence, the authority’s opinion was that the taxpayer will in that case be allowed to use the sponsoring relief.
The past practice of tax authorities indicated that the relief was applicable in the case of cash sponsorship. Now the authorities have clarified the position by adding non-cash sponsorship as an allowable form of deduction.
The new ruling offers a chance for tax savings for many medical service firms. With the due date for 2022 annual tax returns having been rescheduled to June 30, this seems to be a good time for taxpayers to review their 2022 CSR activities to see if the sponsoring relief may perhaps be available to them.
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