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Improvements in the processing of debt deferrals and installments

The tax credit enjoys special protection in our legal system that is based, in essence, on the ultimate purpose to which the income obtained by the State is allocated: attend to the general interests and the maintenance of the welfare state. One of the manifestations of said protection is the need to guarantee the full payment of the amount owed, granting guarantees admissible in law that must be sufficient both legally and economically, when natural and legal persons, in the legitimate exercise of their rights, choose for deferring the payment of the amounts owed, or they choose to file as many resources and claims as the law makes available to them, in defense of their interests.

The postponement or installment of the payment of debts of taxpayers who find themselves in temporary economic and financial difficulties has been shown to be an effective tool to facilitate compliance with their tax obligations.

Order HFP/311/2023, of March 28, has recently been approved with a double objective: expand the amount of the exemption from the obligation to provide the necessary guarantees for granting payment deferrals and installments, and to obtain the suspension of administrative acts subject to appeal and claim, which has exceeded the 30,000 euros established in the regulations prior to the current 50,000 euros, and streamline the management procedure for these requests by promoting their automated management, which will reduce waiting times and improve the efficiency of the system.

The new Order applies to requests for payment deferral and installments, submitted since April 15, referring to debts derived from rights of a public nature managed by the Tax Agency, but has some exceptions. It does not apply to customs debts regulated by Regulation (EU) No 952/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 9 October 2013 establishing the Union Customs Code, nor to debts and state tax sanctions referred to in the eleventh Additional Provision of Law 16/2022, of September 5, reforming the consolidated text of the Bankruptcy Law.

As a complement to the new Order, the Director of the Collection Department of the Tax Agency has issued two Instructions that establish a more flexible processing scheme for deferrals and installments. The maximum payment terms are extended, which will be 24 months for natural persons and 12 months for legal entities, for applications exempt from providing guarantees when the total amount of outstanding debt is greater than 3,000 euros. Furthermore, these requests will be processed automatically, which will lead to the almost instantaneous granting of their deferral to a greater number of taxpayers.

Requests for deferral or installments for a total amount of outstanding debt equal to or less than 3,000 euros will be resolved automatically based on the proposed deadlines that the party obliged to pay has indicated in their request and provided that the amount of each of the deadlines resulting, excluding interest, is not less than 50 euros.

Applications can be submitted through the Tax Agency's APP or the electronic headquarters, and the interested party can obtain the resolution in a short period of time.

For the resolution of postponements or divisions that require the provision of guarantees, the requirements that must be met are established depending on the type of guarantee provided. When the guarantee consists of a bond, bank guarantee or surety insurance, to serve as such both for the suspension in the execution of the contested acts and for the granting of deferrals and installments of payment, they must be constituted in compliance with the provisions of the applicable tax regulations. . In addition, the provisions that regulate the organization, supervision and solvency of credit institutions and insurance and reinsurance entities, as well as the legal regime of mutual guarantee companies, must be followed to the extent that they are applicable in this area.

Certain assets are detailed that, due to their intrinsic characteristics or the limited possibilities of their execution, do not meet the minimum conditions of economic or legal sufficiency to be admitted as suitable when considering them as guarantee for payment deferrals or installments. Reference is also made to those assets that, although they may be suitable, presumably lack a market in a possible execution and generate a series of problems that must be assessed when qualifying their degree of legal and economic sufficiency.

The maximum payment terms that the corresponding resolution will include will depend on the type of guarantee provided. In this way, when a bank guarantee or surety insurance certificate is provided, the maximum term will be 60 months. When the guarantee consists of unencumbered urban real estate, the maximum concession period will be 36 months, while when other guarantees are provided, the maximum concession period will be 24 months. In cases of total or partial waiver of guarantee, the maximum concession period will be 12 months.

In the same line of flexibilization of deadlines, the maximum concession term is extended to 60 months for those cases in which there are exceptional reasons to exceed the maximum established deadlines and that require the express authorization of the person in charge of the management of the Department. of Collection.

In the event that the suspension or postponement or fractionation is granted to the main debtor and the corresponding guarantee has been established, the effects will be transferred to those responsible and the rest of those co-obligated to pay the debt, so that the suspension will be agreed. of the enforceability of the debts included in the request for postponement or installment presented by the main debtor without the need for those responsible or co-obligors to provide guarantee through administrative means.

In short, it is a set of measures that seeks to facilitate compliance with tax obligations, while guaranteeing the protection of the tax credit and streamlining the management of requests for payment deferral or installments.