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Tax changes planned for 2021

The Ministry of Finance announced the planned amendments to tax regulations to be passed in 2021. The focus will be on innovation. Under the amendments, taxpayers will be able to use the R&D and the IP Box reliefs jointly in a single tax year, along with two new reliefs, i.e. the robotization relief and the prototype relief. Furthermore, the Ministry plans to extend Estonian CIT scheme application to cooperative societies, introduce simplifications to VAT settlements (SLIM VAT 2 package), the National e-Invoicing System, and the EU VAT e-Commerce Package, and to amend WHT collection provisions. 

Changes to the Excise Duty Act

The coming months are to bring a raft of amendments relating to excise duties, with works on even more changes being still underway. On 22 December 2020, Polish President signed the Act of 10 December 2020 amending the Act on Excise Duty and certain other Acts. The Act provides for, inter alia:

establishing the Central Register of Excise Entities and defining the rules of its operation;

  • introducing changes to the rules and procedure for registration of taxpayers or entities performing activities involving excise goods;
  • modifying conditions for applying excise duty exemption for certain excise goods, including certain coal products;
  • implementing changes with regard to trade in goods subject to excise duty, including the issues related to monitoring the sale of coal products via EMCS PL2 System.

The Act is expected to enter into force on 1 February 2021. Furthermore, on 30 December 2020, the Ministry of Finance's bill amending the Act on Excise Duty and certain other Acts was submitted to the Lower House of the Polish Parliament. Under the bill, the decisions relating to Binding Excise Information may be repealed ex officio or upon the party's request, in situations where the Information becomes incompliant with the law. Furthermore, the bill provides for extension of the Information's binding force to the entity for which it is issued and introduction of a 5-year validity period for all the Information (with a possibility of further extension). The Ministry is also to introduce the requirement of keeping electronic records of excise goods (starting from 1 January 2022) and the requirement to file excise returns in electronic form only (starting from 1 July 2021, except of simplified returns filed by natural persons not conducting business activity). New regulations are expected to enter into force on 1 April 2021. 

New templates of forms related to Estonian CIT settlements

On 7 January 2021, the decree on the new templates of forms related to settlements made under the Estonian CIT scheme, i.e. lump sum taxation on income earned by companies, was published in the Polish Journal of Laws. The decree covers the following types of forms:

  • the ZAW-RD form used for notification on the choice of lump-sum taxation on income earned by companies and
  • the OSW-RD form used to provide information on entities in which a shareholder of the taxpayer using the scheme is entitled to a share.

Resolutions on the Financial Shield 2.0 passed by the Council of Ministers

On 5 January 2021, the Council of Ministers passed the resolutions on the Polish Development Fund's Financial Shield 2.0 for micro-, small and medium-sized enterprises and amendments to the Financial Shield 1.0. Micro-, small and medium-sized businesses will be granted additional PLN 20bn in form of subsidies and discharges. The funds are to be distributed from 15 January to the end of March, with an option of extension until the end of June. In order to become eligible for the aid, an entity must, inter alia, demonstrate a decline in turnover and operate under one of PKD (Polish Classification of Activity) codes specified in the resolution (including retail sale of clothing, food and beverages or textiles; operation of hotels, catering establishments, gyms, amusement parks and cinemas). Furthermore, the resolutions bring amendments to the first Financial Shield introduced under the Polish Development Fund, targeted at small and medium-sized companies, which provide for a possibility of a discharge of up to 100% of the subsidy, depending on meeting certain conditions. The project is aimed at entities operating under PKD codes provided for by the Financial Shield 2.0.

The Ministry’s answers to queries on changes in tax offices’ jurisdiction

The Ministry of Finance published a list of answers to the most frequently asked questions about changes in the competence of specialized tax offices, in force as of 1 January 2021. The changes relate to covering the largest taxpayers by the jurisdiction of a single tax office - the First Masovian Tax Office in Warsaw, inclusion of other large taxpayers in the jurisdiction of specialized tax offices handling the matters of large business entities, and the transfer of smaller entities with foreign capital share to the jurisdiction of other tax offices. The answers provided by the Ministry clarify the doubts related to the criteria of income and turnover. They also relate to proceedings, pending cases, modes of submission of applications and certificates, as well as dates of making the changes, providing change-related information and other updates.

New CIT and PIT return forms

The Ministry of Finance presented the amended templates of tax information, returns, statements and attachments used in PIT and flat-rate tax settlements for 2020, as well as those used under the Estonian CIT scheme. It is worth noting that the PIT-4R and PIT-8AR forms used to settle the income (revenue) obtained from 1 January 2020, updated by the Act of 21 October 2020, are no longer valid. Taxpayers should now apply the templates published in the amending Act of 11 December 2020 (Journal of Laws, item 2346). In turn, the PIT/O attachment was modified to allow taxpayers to deduct donations made to counteract the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as donations of portable computers and tablets to educational facilities. The amendments also cover attachments to returns. PIT/WZ or PIT/WZR attachments must be now filed to include the bad debt relief (applicable as of 2020) in lump-sum tax settlements.