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Den omvända ventilen - en undersökning av den omvända ventilens tolkning och tillämplighet i de riktade ränteavdragsbegränsningsreglerna

Walldnö, Ebba LU (2020) JURM02 20201
Faculty of Law
Department of Law
Abstract (Swedish)
Dagens riktade ränteavdragsbegränsningsregler trädde ikraft 1 januari 2019 och var en omarbetad version av 2009 års samt 2013 års ränteavdragsbegränsningsregler. Gällande riktade ränteavdragsbegränsnings-regler var stadgade i 24 kap. IL. I 24 kap. 18 § IL föreskrevs att företag skulle klargöra att långivaren var inom EES, utanför EES i en stat som hade skatteavtal med Sverige eller att ränteintäkten beskattades med 10 %. Vidare skulle den omvända ventilen inte vara tillämplig om ränteavdrag för koncerninterna skulder skulle medges. Den omvända ventilen tillämpades på skuldförhållanden som uteslutande eller så gott som uteslutande uppkom för att en intressegemenskap skulle erhålla en väsentlig skatteförmån. I uppsatsen syfte var att... (More)
Dagens riktade ränteavdragsbegränsningsregler trädde ikraft 1 januari 2019 och var en omarbetad version av 2009 års samt 2013 års ränteavdragsbegränsningsregler. Gällande riktade ränteavdragsbegränsnings-regler var stadgade i 24 kap. IL. I 24 kap. 18 § IL föreskrevs att företag skulle klargöra att långivaren var inom EES, utanför EES i en stat som hade skatteavtal med Sverige eller att ränteintäkten beskattades med 10 %. Vidare skulle den omvända ventilen inte vara tillämplig om ränteavdrag för koncerninterna skulder skulle medges. Den omvända ventilen tillämpades på skuldförhållanden som uteslutande eller så gott som uteslutande uppkom för att en intressegemenskap skulle erhålla en väsentlig skatteförmån. I uppsatsen syfte var att fastställa gällande rätt genom en undersökning av bestämmelsens två centrala rekvisit, uteslutande eller så gott som uteslutande och väsentlig skatteförmån.

Den omvända ventilen och de riktade ränteavdragsbegränsningsreglerna utreddes även utifrån vedertagna metoder för skatterättslig tolkning. För syftet valdes neutralitetsprincipen, legalitetsprincipen och in dubio contra fiscum ut. Dessutom användes den kvantifierande betydelsen i den omvända ventilen för tolkning av bestämmelsens tillämplighet. Syftet med perspektiven var även att identifiera fördelar samt nackdelar i den omvända ventilen och de riktade ränteavdragsbegränsningsreglerna.

Det var inte på förhand möjligt att med säkerhet avgöra om den omvända ventilen var tillämplig. Varken ordalydelsen eller förarbeten gav svar på hur uteslutande eller så gott som uteslutande eller väsentlig skatteförmån i den omvända ventilen i praktiken användes för alla typer av skuldförhållanden. Bestämmelsens syfte att endast omfatta aggressiv skatteplanering samt rena missbruksfall kunde då vara behjälpligt.

Den intetsägande ordalydelsen uppstod på grund av karaktären i den omvända ventilen som kringgåendelagstiftning samt för ändamålen som skulle förverkligas. Komplexiteten i den omvända ventilens faktiska bedömning berodde på vaga och subjektiva rekvisit samt att tillämpligheten var beroende av de enskilda omständigheterna i varje skuldförhållande. Den omvända ventilens tillämpning inbegrep således lager på lager-bedömningar av en omfattande mängd omständigheter. Den omvända ventilen utmynnade därmed i svåra utrednings- och bevisfrågor.

I uppsatsen fastställdes vissa karaktärsdrag hos ett skuldförhållande som särskilt framkallade den omvända ventilens tillämplighet. Det handlade om skuldförhållanden som användes till finansiering av ett internt förvärv eller intern omstrukturering. Vidare när skuldförhållandet inte baserades på ett finansieringsbehov i det låntagande bolaget, om lånevillkoren avvek från vad som var marknadsmässigt, om skatteförmånen var väldigt omfattande eller om den utländska beskattningen skiljde sig väsentligt från svensk beskattning. Gemensamt för karaktärsdragen var syftet att förflytta medel istället för finansiering av verksamheten.

Det identifierades både nackdelar och fördelar i förhållande till de valda perspektiven för den omvända ventilen. Fördelarna var kopplade till den omvända ventilens syften och i viss mån den omvända ventilens utformning. Ändamålen var eftersträvansvärda för lagstiftaren att vilja uppnå. Dock konstaterades att ändamålen fick stora effekter för faktiska tillämpningen av den omvända ventilen. Om fördelarna eller nackdelarna vägde tyngre berodde på vem som besvarade frågan och den omvända ventilens faktiska framtida effektivitet och tillämpning.

Konklusionen av undersökningen av gällande rätt och i förhållande till perspektiven var att den omvända ventilen lämnade ett stort utrymme för rättstillämparen att tolka, tillämpa och fylla lagen med innehåll. Vad som med säkerhet konstaterades var att endast skuldförhållanden som var fullständigt skattemässigt betingade omfattades av den omvända ventilen. För övriga skuldförhållanden blev tillämpligheten en bedömningsfråga. Följderna blev att det fanns en överhängande risk att lika fall behandlades olika, mindre förutsebarhet och ökad godtycklighet. Det förmodades leda till stora kostnader för företag att anpassa sig till samt för rättstillämparen att bedöma den omvända ventilen. Utgångspunkten för domstolsprövningen av den omvända ventilen bör vara att bestämmelsen inte var tillämplig, förutom vid rena missbruksfall. Det borde underlätta domstolarnas tillämpning av bestämmelsen. (Less)
Abstract
The current interest deduction limitation rules on related party debt entered into force on 1 January 2019 and were an adapted version of the earlier interest deduction limitation rules on related party debt from 2009 and 2013. The current interest deduction limitation rules on related party debt were regulated in chapter 24 of the Swedish Income Tax Act. According to chapter 24 section 18 of the Swedish Income Tax Act, corporations have to show that the lender was within the EEA, outside the EEA but in a state which had a tax agreement with Sweden or that the interest income was taxed with at least 10 %. Furthermore, the reversed exemption rule (Sw. den omvända ventilen) should not be applicable, to be granted an interest deduction for... (More)
The current interest deduction limitation rules on related party debt entered into force on 1 January 2019 and were an adapted version of the earlier interest deduction limitation rules on related party debt from 2009 and 2013. The current interest deduction limitation rules on related party debt were regulated in chapter 24 of the Swedish Income Tax Act. According to chapter 24 section 18 of the Swedish Income Tax Act, corporations have to show that the lender was within the EEA, outside the EEA but in a state which had a tax agreement with Sweden or that the interest income was taxed with at least 10 %. Furthermore, the reversed exemption rule (Sw. den omvända ventilen) should not be applicable, to be granted an interest deduction for related party indebtedness. The reversed exemption rule was applied on intra-group indebtedness which was exclusively or virtually exclusively in place to provide the related parties with a significant tax benefit. The essay’s purpose was to examine current provisions’ two substantial requirements, exclusively or virtually exclusively (Sw. uteslutande eller så gott som uteslutande) and significant tax benefit (Sw. väsentlig skatteförmån).

The reversed exemption rule and the interest deduction limitation rules on related party debt were also explored in the study from acceptable methods of interpreting tax law. For this purpose, the principle of neutrality, the principle of legality and in dubio contra fiscum were selected. Furthermore, the quantifiable understanding of the reversed exemption rule was utilized for the scope of the provision to be examined. The purpose with the perspectives was, furthermore, to identify advantages and disadvantages in the reversed exemption rule and the interest deduction limitation rules on related party debt.

The result of the essay was that it was not possible in advance to determine with certainty whether the reversed exemption rule would be applied. Neither the wording nor the legislative history gave answers on how exclusively or virtually exclusive or significant tax benefit in practice should be interpreted for all kinds of indebtedness. The provision’s purpose could be helpful for the interpretation, which was to include only certain cases of abuse (Sw. rena missbruksfall) and aggressive tax avoidance.

The hollow wording of the reversed exemption rule was formulated due to its character as avoidance legislation and for the purposes of the provision to be accomplished. The complexity of the examination of the reversed exemption rule existed because of the vague and subjective requirements as well as the applicability depended on the specific circumstances in the particular debt relationship. The provision contained several layers of assessments, which demanded that a comprehensive amount of circumstances had to be clarified. The application led to difficult investigations and assessments of evidence.

There were certain characteristics in a debt relationship that particularly provoked the reversed exemption rule’s applicability. It was debts that were used for financing a related party acquisition or reorganisation, if there was not a financing need in the borrowing company, if the terms of the debt derogated from what was considered market conditions, if the tax benefit was very extensive or if the foreign taxation significantly differed from Swedish taxation. All of these characteristics had a common denominator, which was that the purpose of the debt was to transfer revenue rather than to be utilized as financing in the corporate operations.

The examination of the chosen perspectives provided both disadvantages and advantages regarding the reversed exemption rule. The advantages were mainly connected to the purposes of the reversed exemption rule and to a certain extent the wording. The purposes of the interest deduction limitation rules on related party debt were desirable interests of the legislator. However, the purposes led to substantial practical application effects of the reversed exemption rule. Whether the disadvantages or the advantages prevailed depended on who answered the question and the provision’s actual future effectiveness and applicability.
The conclusion of the examination of current legislation and concerning the perspectives was the judicial practitioner obtained a broad discretion to interpret, apply and to fill the reversed exemption rule with content. What could be concluded with certainty was that debts which were completely motivated by tax avoidance reasons were not allowed. For all other debt relationships, the applicability would be a question of judgement. The wide judicial discretion led to an imminent risk that similar cases were treated differently and a higher degree of arbitrariness as well as less predictable outcome’s. The application of the reversed exemption rule was deemed to bring high costs for corporations to adapt and for the judicial practitioner to judge upon. The starting point for the examination of the reversed exemption rule should, however, be that the provision was not applicable, except for certain cases of abuse. This eased the judicial practitioners’ examination of the provision. (Less)
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author
Walldnö, Ebba LU
supervisor
organization
alternative title
The reversed exemption rule - A study of the reversed exemption rules’ interpretation and applicability in the interest deduction limitation rules on related party debt
course
JURM02 20201
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
Skatterätt
language
Swedish
id
9010702
date added to LUP
2020-06-16 10:53:35
date last changed
2020-06-16 10:53:35
@misc{9010702,
  abstract     = {The current interest deduction limitation rules on related party debt entered into force on 1 January 2019 and were an adapted version of the earlier interest deduction limitation rules on related party debt from 2009 and 2013. The current interest deduction limitation rules on related party debt were regulated in chapter 24 of the Swedish Income Tax Act. According to chapter 24 section 18 of the Swedish Income Tax Act, corporations have to show that the lender was within the EEA, outside the EEA but in a state which had a tax agreement with Sweden or that the interest income was taxed with at least 10 %. Furthermore, the reversed exemption rule (Sw. den omvända ventilen) should not be applicable, to be granted an interest deduction for related party indebtedness. The reversed exemption rule was applied on intra-group indebtedness which was exclusively or virtually exclusively in place to provide the related parties with a significant tax benefit. The essay’s purpose was to examine current provisions’ two substantial requirements, exclusively or virtually exclusively (Sw. uteslutande eller så gott som uteslutande) and significant tax benefit (Sw. väsentlig skatteförmån). 

The reversed exemption rule and the interest deduction limitation rules on related party debt were also explored in the study from acceptable methods of interpreting tax law. For this purpose, the principle of neutrality, the principle of legality and in dubio contra fiscum were selected. Furthermore, the quantifiable understanding of the reversed exemption rule was utilized for the scope of the provision to be examined. The purpose with the perspectives was, furthermore, to identify advantages and disadvantages in the reversed exemption rule and the interest deduction limitation rules on related party debt. 

The result of the essay was that it was not possible in advance to determine with certainty whether the reversed exemption rule would be applied. Neither the wording nor the legislative history gave answers on how exclusively or virtually exclusive or significant tax benefit in practice should be interpreted for all kinds of indebtedness. The provision’s purpose could be helpful for the interpretation, which was to include only certain cases of abuse (Sw. rena missbruksfall) and aggressive tax avoidance. 

The hollow wording of the reversed exemption rule was formulated due to its character as avoidance legislation and for the purposes of the provision to be accomplished. The complexity of the examination of the reversed exemption rule existed because of the vague and subjective requirements as well as the applicability depended on the specific circumstances in the particular debt relationship. The provision contained several layers of assessments, which demanded that a comprehensive amount of circumstances had to be clarified. The application led to difficult investigations and assessments of evidence. 

There were certain characteristics in a debt relationship that particularly provoked the reversed exemption rule’s applicability. It was debts that were used for financing a related party acquisition or reorganisation, if there was not a financing need in the borrowing company, if the terms of the debt derogated from what was considered market conditions, if the tax benefit was very extensive or if the foreign taxation significantly differed from Swedish taxation. All of these characteristics had a common denominator, which was that the purpose of the debt was to transfer revenue rather than to be utilized as financing in the corporate operations. 

The examination of the chosen perspectives provided both disadvantages and advantages regarding the reversed exemption rule. The advantages were mainly connected to the purposes of the reversed exemption rule and to a certain extent the wording. The purposes of the interest deduction limitation rules on related party debt were desirable interests of the legislator. However, the purposes led to substantial practical application effects of the reversed exemption rule. Whether the disadvantages or the advantages prevailed depended on who answered the question and the provision’s actual future effectiveness and applicability. 
The conclusion of the examination of current legislation and concerning the perspectives was the judicial practitioner obtained a broad discretion to interpret, apply and to fill the reversed exemption rule with content. What could be concluded with certainty was that debts which were completely motivated by tax avoidance reasons were not allowed. For all other debt relationships, the applicability would be a question of judgement. The wide judicial discretion led to an imminent risk that similar cases were treated differently and a higher degree of arbitrariness as well as less predictable outcome’s. The application of the reversed exemption rule was deemed to bring high costs for corporations to adapt and for the judicial practitioner to judge upon. The starting point for the examination of the reversed exemption rule should, however, be that the provision was not applicable, except for certain cases of abuse. This eased the judicial practitioners’ examination of the provision.},
  author       = {Walldnö, Ebba},
  keyword      = {Skatterätt},
  language     = {swe},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Den omvända ventilen - en undersökning av den omvända ventilens tolkning och tillämplighet i de riktade ränteavdragsbegränsningsreglerna},
  year         = {2020},
}