Foreigners 'excluded' from online tax system

2nd June 2006, Comments 0 comments

2 June 2006, BRUSSELS — The Finance Ministry admitted on Friday that foreigners living in Belgium cannot automatically lodge their 2005 tax returns online via the federal government's Tax-on-Web programme.

2 June 2006

BRUSSELS — The Finance Ministry admitted on Friday that foreigners living in Belgium cannot automatically lodge their 2005 tax returns online via the federal government's Tax-on-Web programme.

Ministry spokeswoman Birgit Peters said foreign residents will instead have to personally report to the offices of the government's information and communications technology department, Fedict, to obtain the necessary access code.

Admitting that such a system is "silly" and "out of date", Peters said the requirement applied to both EU and non-EU nationals living legally in Belgium.

She said there is talk that the system will be changed in future so that foreign residents might be able to apply online for a code, the same as a Belgian national. She could not give a timeframe when the change will be implemented.

However, Peters stressed that when a foreign resident has obtained their code from the Fedict office in Brussels, they will not need to re-apply. She said the code is permanent.

Finance Minister Didier Reynders said earlier this week that the Tax-on-Web system is now up and running for the public to lodge their tax returns for their 2005 income. The deadline is 19 July.

Belgian nationals wanting to lodge their tax return electronically will first need to register online at www.taxonweb.be. A personal access code will be sent out within 10 days. Foreigners must apply in person with Fedict to obtain their code.

This is the 4th year in which Tax-on-Web will be used. Some 570,000 people lodged their taxes online last year, representing 10 percent of all taxpayers in Belgium. In its first year of operation, 57,000 people used Tax-on-Web, rising to 169,000 in 2004.

It is not known how many foreign residents have used the system in years past.

Fedict can be contacted at:

Maria-Theresiastraat 1/3
1000 Brussels
Ph: 02 212 9600
Fax: 02 212 9699
Email: info@fedict.be
Online: www.fedict.be

[Copyright Expatica News 2006]

Subject: Belgian news

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