30% ruling – minimum income requirement and soon no more

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The 30% ruling is a benefit with a time restriction to the use of this ruling that soon will be shortened to maximum 5 years. Soon no more ruling, what does this imply?

30% ruling – Soon no more

The 30% ruling can end due to the following reasons:

  • The period for which the ruling has been granted has lapsed;
  • The employee no longer earns enough income for the ruling;
  • The employee starts garden leave;
  • Government changes the rules of the game while the game is still being played.
30% ruling
30% ruling

30% ruling – minimum required income

The 30% ruling has an income requirement to be met which is EUR 37.296 for the year 2018. The EUR 37.296 is the salary where the 30% ruling has been applied to already, so  this is the 70% salary. Hence, in order to qualify for the ruling, the employee needs to have in his or her employment agreement a salary including holiday pay for at least EUR 53.280.

The exception to the rule is that when you are under 30 years old and you hold a master degree, the requirement minimum income is EUR 28.350, being a gross salary of EUR 40.500.

We do get a lot of requests by employees who do not meet the minimum income requirement. The question is then if it is possible not to use the 30% percentage, but a lower percentage in order to qualify for the ruling. That is possible. So your gross salary is EUR 50.000. If you then use 30%, the fiscal salary is EUR 35.000 and you are not entitled to the ruling. But if you then use a 25% percentage, the fiscal salary is EUR 37.500 and you still can qualify. Hopefully over time your salary goes up and you can fully use the 30%.

The mistake made in this assumption is that a lot think the EUR 37.296 is the gross salary to be met. But that is not the case. Neither would the application be granted, nor would the applicable percentage exceed 0%.

30% ruling – minimum income required turning 30 years old

The exception to the rule mentioned above is about the employee under 30 years old holding a master degree that needs a gross salary of EUR 40.500. The moment this employee turns 30 years old and his salary does not meet the corresponding minimum income requirement of EUR 53.280 the ruling is lost.

30% ruling – minimum income required daddy day

You might notice on a regular Friday that it is quiet in the office, in traffic, on the phone as most Dutch take the Friday off for pleasure time. That might appeal to you, hence you agree with your employer to work 4 days per week instead of 5 days per week. This has an impact on the 30% ruling.

The moment you work less days, you earn less salary.

Example:

The minimum income requirement is EUR 54.000 annually, the employee earns EUR 60.000 per year but then decides to work 1 day per week less. His salary then drops from EUR 60.000 to EUR 48.000. The moment the employee no longer meets the EUR 54.000 gross income the ruling is lost.

30% ruling – garden leave

Before the crisis of 2007 garden leave was very popular, except for the employees who took the leave just before the crisis, they had a permanent leave.  Garden leave is explicitly mentioned in the rules and regulations of the 30% ruling as a termination of the ruling immediately. So you can agree on the salary being paid, but you do not show up for work. That is regarded garden leave and then the ruling cannot be applied for.

30% ruling – Ended by the Government

The Dutch Government ends most rulings by limiting the period to max 5 years starting January 1, 2019. Even though we speak a lot of expats in disbelieve or in the hope it will be adjusted. It will not be adjusted. Instructions from the European Union that the Dutch Government stalled as long as they could, but now it is time to be in line with EU instructions.

30% ruling – ruling is lost, forever?

In our explanation above we state that when certain conditions are no longer met, the ruling is lost. What does that imply? That implies the ruling is lost and you are not able to reapply for the ruling ever. So once you lose the ruling, you have lost the ruling forever.

30% ruling- what happens if terminated?

More wage tax due over your salary, less net salary in your hand.

Box 3 world wide assets are to be reported in the 2019 income tax return.

Costs of the international school cannot be paid any longer by the employer, with the exception of the running school year 2018/2019. That can still be paid.

If you have a non Dutch BV foreign limited liability company, the dividend payments made to you are part of Box 2 the moment the ruling ends. So till you have the ruling, you can still benefit from this possibility.

No more swapping your non EU drivers license for a Dutch one, so you need to take the horrible Dutch exam.

For US nationals that worked abroad no more days deducted from your Dutch tax burden.

Orange Tax Services

The ending of the 30% ruling has massive impact on the employees who it concern. We are asked about what to do with the finances, but we are no financial advisors. We are asked what can be done to reduce the drop in income. Often the employee looks at the employer to compensate the difference, but we doubt that view is shared by the employer.

What we do know is that appealing the Government change in rules in relation to the 30% ruling permit granted with explicit dates, will not work. That is the general opinion among experts, based on experiences in the recent past with similar situations.