Moratorium on rent payments

Conten Table

More confined, in time not in form

In case you are keeping count, we started the confinement with Royal Decree 463, and Royal Decree-Law 7. Today we write about Royal Decree-Law 15/2020, of 21 April, on urgent complementary measures to support the economy and employment. The Royal Decree counter is at 491.  

Of course, as professionals, we try to filter the huge amount of provisions that are published in the BOE, the DOGC, the BOPB and many other bulletins and inform you of those aspects that we consider may be more relevant and/or important to know.

The new RDL has a star measure: the moratorium on the payment of rent for premises used for activities. As with the previous moratorium, this one brings with it conditions, exceptions, different groups… which can be summarised as follows:

Owners

First, regarding the owner: if it is a company or public entity, or a large holder (holder of more than 10 properties, excluding garages and storage rooms, or more than 1,5000m2 of constructed surface area):

  •   The rent moratorium does not apply to anyone who has already reached a rental agreement (before 23 April).  
  •   You cannot refuse the moratorium, which will be applied automatically. Apply the rent moratorium!  
  • It will apply for the duration of the state of emergency and its extensions and can be extended for up to four months to recover from the impact of COVID19.
  • No interest or penalties will accrue.
  • The amounts due will be paid in instalments over a period of two years, within the duration of the contract and/or its extensions.

Regarding the other owners:

  • At the request of the lessee, and within one month from 23 April.
  • Not applicable to those who have already reached a prior agreement (before 23 April) regarding the tenancy.
  • The landlord must accept, it cannot be imposed on him as in the previous case.

The owner may freely dispose of the deposit provided for in Article 36 of the LAU, and the tenant must replace it within one year of the conclusion of the agreement or the remaining term of the contract if it is less than one year.

Tenants

In view of the landlords, the tenant/tenant is also eligible to apply for a rent moratorium.

If you are self-employed:

  • You had to be, or still be, registered in one of the special regimes (RETA, Mar, Mutualidades, …) on 15 March.
  • Their activity has been suspended or their turnover has been reduced by at least 75% in the month prior to applying for the moratorium (in relation to the average of the previous quarter in the previous year).

If it is an SME (PYME):

  • Not exceeding the limits of Article 257.1 of the Capital Companies Act: four million euros in assets, annual turnover of eight million euros, average workforce of fifty employees.
  • To complicate matters further: if two of the above circumstances are not met for two consecutive financial years, the measure does not apply.
  • Activities suspended by the declaration of a state of alarm or orders issued, under Decree 463/2020, by the competent authority.
  • or, failing the above, a reduction of at least 75 per cent in turnover compared to the average of the previous quarter in the preceding year.

That’s “all” as far as the moratorium on leasing premises is concerned. But there is more!

  • The VAT rate of 0 per cent will be applied to deliveries of goods, imports and intra-community acquisitions of the goods listed in this RDL (sanitary material).
  • VAT at 4% will be applied to the supply of: books, newspapers and magazines.
  • With regard to Corporate Income Tax, the option relating to divided payments may be exercised: until 20 May for volume of operations of less than 600,000 euros; from 1 to 20 October for volume of operations of up to 6 million euros. Consolidated tax groups, excluded.

For those who are in “modules” (objective assessment): if they renounce the regime, fulfilling the requirements, they will be able to return to it in the financial year 2021. Meeting the requirements.

There is also a measure relating to the enforceability of tax debts of those who have not paid on time and are applying for financing. If this is your case, please contact us.

Unemployment: the termination of an employment relationship after 9 March will be considered a legal situation of unemployment, regardless of the cause. The same consideration will apply to those who voluntarily leave after 1 March due to a firm commitment to a new contract in another company and this is not materialised by COVID19.

Redemption of pension plans: there is the possibility of redeeming pension plans with a lower tax impact than usual. For the sake of brevity, we do not detail here the measure, which has more sections than a dictionary. If you are interested, please contact us.

Debts with the TGSS whose payment deadline is between April and June can be deferred. Provided that no other deferment is in force and the application is made within the first ten calendar days of the payment period. To be paid in four months with an interest rate of 0.5%.

Lastly, tomorrow it is expected that the extension of the state of alarm will be published in the BOE until the early hours of 10 May. Since the government’s request passed through congress unchanged, we summarise what is said there to save you a new communiqué from us tomorrow, if there are any surprises we will let you know:

  • The state of alert is extended until 00:00 hours on 10 May..
  • All the same, except for changes to articles 7 and 10.6.

 

With regard to freedom of movement, apart from minor changes, the following should be highlighted:

  • Children under 14 years of age may accompany “an adult responsible for their care” when the latter is carrying out one of the authorised activities. For example: your child may accompany you to buy bread, go to the supermarket, to the bank, …

If you have come this far, let us remind you that we recently issued a note informing our clients that not all companies are obliged to close down. Please do not hesitate to contact us to find out whether or not you can resume your activities.

Until the next BOE

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