What is a 'vaststellingsovereenkomst' (agreement between the tax authorities and a business)?
Rules apply in tax law. These rules do not always make things clear to you nor to us. This is because the rules are often very complicated. It is not convenient to take every dispute to court. This takes a very long time, costs money and does not offer any certainty in the short term.
For many years, we have made agreements with taxpayers in order to avoid or terminate any uncertainty and disputes about taxation.
An 'vaststellingsovereenkomst' is an agreement that allows you and us to determine the rights and obligations that apply to both of us in a certain situation. The 'vaststellingsovereenkomst' is often used as a binding regulation in order to resolve any existing disputes or prevent any disputes. Both you and we are bound by what has been laid down in the agreement.
What can be regulated in an 'vaststellingsovereenkomst'?
A 'vaststellingsovereenkomst' (agreement between the tax authorities and a business) often concerns matters that are factual in nature, such as the value of certain premises, the depreciation period of business assets or the level of the minimum salary a director and major shareholder should earn. The agreement may also relate to facts which will take place in the future.
Fines and interest may not be converted into tax. So you are not allowed to make agreements on this in a 'vaststellingsovereenkomst'.
Nor may the aim of a 'vaststellingsovereenkomst' be to depart from tax laws. For instance, you may not agree that you are going to pay the tax owed by another person or that a different tax rate applies.
When does a 'vaststellingsovereenkomst' apply?
The 'vaststellingsovereenkomst' applies if it has been signed by both you and us.
A 'vaststellingsovereenkomst' also applies if it provides for matters that differ from statutory regulations, unless the agreement is contrary to applicable statutory regulations 'to such an extent' that one cannot rely on the agreement to be performed. This also applies if the agreement was formed under duress, by error or under fraud.
An 'vaststellingsovereenkomst' is characterised by the fact that, normally, it includes a provision that neither you nor we can dissolve the agreement. This also in connection with the 'certain' nature of the 'vaststellingsovereenkomst'. The 'vaststellingsovereenkomst' will be terminated if the regulations or the law changes over the subject.
Consequence of the 'vaststellingsovereenkomst'
In determining the tax debt, we have to take the 'vaststellingsovereenkomst' into account. You, too, should abide by the 'vaststellingsovereenkomst'. You have to file your tax return as agreed in this 'vaststellingsovereenkomst'.
Going to court
You and we are bound by the 'vaststellingsovereenkomst'. As a result, the court can no longer review the matter on which the agreement is based. The 'vaststellingsovereenkomst' will normally expressly state that you will not exercise a right of objection and/or appeal or that you withdraw your notice of objection or appeal.
'vaststellingsovereenkomst' may also be concluded during a mediation procedure. This is done through mediation by an independent third party. 'vaststellingsovereenkomst' may not be concluded outside your authorised representative without reason. We always have to ensure that the authorised representative is allowed to act on your behalf.