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Incorrect tax form filed before deadline? – Fine?

There are different tax forms to file your annual income tax return with in the Netherlands, what if you file the wrong from? Will you get a penalty?

The incorrect tax form filed – what flavours do we have?

There is a limited number of tax returns tha can be filed in the Netherlands. The most common one is the P(rivate)-form. The tax resident is an employee or was an employee. The W (profit) tax return if the tax resident is an entrepreneur like a freelancer or ZZP. The C (non resident) is for a non resident tax payer that does have a filing obligation in the Netherlands. For instance for property owned in the Netherlands. The M (Migration) form is for a person that either arrived in the Netherlands or left the Netherlands. In other words started or stopped being a Dutch tax resident.  Then we have the F (final) form if the concerning tax resident has died.

A lot to choose from, what if you made the wrong choice?

Filled the incorrect form, what now?

In the Netherlands we have the obligation to file the income tax return before May 1. And if you have not been invited to file and you are aware you need to pay Dutch tax, you are supposed to file the tax return not later than 14 days after May 1.

What if you did your tax return online ticking the incorrect box for the sort of tax return. Like you chose P instead of W or M instead of C. Have you missed the deadline? The tax office would like to think so and will impose a fine of EUR 385 (2021). The court disagreed.

Court case

A former Dutch tax payer moved to Israel. She was asked to file for the year 2017 the  migration income tax return (M form). She was reminded on April 30, 2019. As a result she filed early May 2019 a non-resident income tax return (C form). That is not the correct form. She was reminded again in November 2019. As she had the opinion to have filed the tax return, she did not respond anymore.

The tax office imposed the EUR 369 penalty for not filing in time the income tax return. The lady made a complaint and asked for reimbursement of costs made related to the complaint. The penalty was deleted, but the compensation not granted.

Incorrect tax form filed before deadline? – Fine?

The lady went to the higher court to complain for not getting a compensation. The tax office argued that the tax return was send to the lady to her Israeli address. The tax office could not substantiate to the court if that was in fact the migration income tax return.

The reminders did not show which tax return was supposed to have been filed. The reminders are general reminders, not specific to what is actually expected to be filed.

The court could not rule any different that the lady filed in time a tax return. That implies no penalty for not filing in time could have been issued. The fact that the tax office does not communicate in their reminders what exactly it is the tax office would like you to do, is the risk of the tax office. No penalty for the lady and she is entitled to compensation of costs made.

Tax is exciting

We think tax is exciting. We are excited about this court verdict. Indeed, the tax office sends a random reminder. If the reminded person contacts with us, we need to find out via calls what it is the tax office expects. Even then we something are informed incorrectly about the type of tax return that is expected.

That said, if you know that the Migration income tax return (M form) cannot be done online and the non-resident tax return (C form) can be done online. We understand the lady of the court case did the best she could within the limitations of possibilities. Maybe she could have emailed us to assist her with the reminders, that would have been exciting!

My name is Kelly and I am excited to file your correct tax return to prevent a penalty.

No penalty
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