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Accountant Belgium

Accountant Belgium

Working with an accountant in Belgium is recommended for small, medium, and large companies alike.  An expert, such as one of the accountants in our team is able to provide ongoing assistance for compliance, as well as valuable advice for business growth.

A certified public accountant, or CPA Belgium, is able to provide tailored services to businesses that are just starting out, already established Belgian companies who are looking for a new service provider, as well as to investors and entrepreneurs who are in need of details concerning business start-ups.

Our law firm in Belgium includes a team of attorneys as well as other English-speaking experts.

You can rely on our partner accountants in Belgium for adequate assistance in a wide range of tax matters and accountancy law reporting issues.

 Quick Facts  
Bookkeeping services offered by our accountants in Belgium

Accounts receivable and accounts payable,
bank account reconciliation

Payroll  Calculating the salary and making the salary payments, handling the employer's social security contributions according to the type of employees
(blue-collar or white-collar)

Invoicing

Calculating and issuing invoices, invoice management
and tracking
Cash management

Cash payments, receipts management, cash flow statements

Reporting Annual financial statement preparation in accordance with the statutory requirements
Financial analysis

Profitability ratio calculation, operational efficiency calculation, liquidity analysis, etc.

Forensic accounting

Our accountant in Belgium can provide, upon request, special services and evaluations relevant in legal proceedings (i.e., money laundering investigations, corporate fraud, tax evasion, etc.)

Tax compliance Making sure that the company is compliant with the relevant tax due dates, paying the corporate income tax on
a quarterly basis
VAT registration
and reporting
Registration for VAT purposes before the commencement of VAT activities, VAT return filing on a monthly or quarterly basis, as applicable
Audit services offered by
our accountants in Belgium
A statutory auditor from our team can audit the financial statements for companies that are subject to this requirement
Property financial matters  Compliance with the real property tax applicable in case of income from immovable property located in Belgium
Statutory compliance  Compliance with the Belgian GAAP and the mandatory IFRS for the consolidated accounts of listed companies in Belgium
Tax authority assistance Representation in front of the Federal Tax Administration or the regional and local tax authorities, depending on the region in Belgium where the company is based
Support for voluntary dissolution  Guidance for settling debtor claims and for distributing the remaining assets, information on the general liquidation procedure and the need to use a liquidator
 Services for foreign companies  Accounting compliance for branches in Belgium, information on the taxation of foreign companies doing business in the country

Services offered by an accountant in Belgium

We offer complete accountancy services that are customized to meet the specific needs of the business. As our client, you will benefit from having your account overseen by a dedicated expert who will be able to offer tailored solutions, depending in business size and industry.

CPA in Belgium from our team will help you with:

  • Bookkeeping: the basic service of keeping the accounts of all the financial transactions of the company;
  • Tax accounting: observing the income tax, VAT return and other filings applicable to Belgian companies;
  • Payroll: a CPA in Belgium can also help you with maintaining and updating the employee income records as well as making all of the needed submissions.
  • Internal auditing: as needed per the company size, our team will also help you with this service intended to verify if the business is compliant.

Companies may also request additional services from our accountants in Belgium:

  • Forensic accounting: a special type of service that is usually used in relation to financial problems or fraud;
  • Bank reconciliation: a service aimed at finding any existing discrepancies in the financial records of the business.

Our team offers all of these services and, in addition to these, our lawyers in Belgium can help answer any questions about the applicable tax and reporting laws.

Tax advisory services offered by our accountants in Belgium

Our tax advisors are able to answer questions about the taxation regime, as well as provide clients with details on lawful tax minimization strategies whenever possible.

By knowing the rage and scope of the applicable tax incentives in Belgium, foreign and local companies can reduce their tax burden.

For example, there are various investment deductions that can be accessed by companies operating in the research and development sector, as well as credits for R&D activities.

Our accountants in Belgium can provide investors with information on the manner in which a company (and the Belgian branch of a non-resident company) can deduct an interest expense connected to qualifying equity.

The deduction of a deemed interest expense is possible under the notional interest deduction (NID), a measure implemented by the financial authorities, allowing companies to deduct an interest that is fictitious (taxable income), after it was calculated based on the net assets (their shareholder’s equity).

Our team will explain the manner in which this deduction applies and can assist companies that with to benefit from this deduction.

For businesses that do not make sufficient profit, the deduction can be carried forward for the next seven years.

Our team will also provide companies with information on the research and development incentives, such as the following:

  • a tax exemption for regional subsidies;
  • the innovation income deduction;
  • a partial exemption from the payment of the withholding tax on salaries paid to researchers;
  • the deduction of research and development costs;
  • tax credit for R&D or increased investment deduction for research and development.

Understanding these incentives, the eligibility criteria and when and how to apply can be particularly useful for R&D companies.

By working with an experienced accountant, businesses will be able to take advantage of these. Working with our accountants in Belgium is recommended as early as this company formation stage, when we can provide you with information on the requirements you will need to meet as a new company owner.

Annual reporting requirements and taxation for Belgian companies

In Belgium, companies are required to used double entry accounting using a full set of books (sales, purchases, cash) and maintain a yearly inventory of the assets. Our law firm in Belgium is a multidisciplinary one, which also works with our partners that provide connected services, such as accounting.

All companies file the annual financial statements (the balance sheet, income statement, notes, etc.) and the size of the company dictates the annual accounts template; in some cases, the financial statements will also include a statutory management report.

Companies pay the following taxes:

  • Corporate income tax rate of 25%;
  • Value-added tax at a standard rate of 21% or reduced rates of 12%, 6% or 0% (with no minimum VAT-registration threshold);
  • Social security contributions for the employer with a base value of 30.57% of 1.08 times the gross salary of blue-collar employees and 25% of the gross salary of white-collar employees (additional contributions apply in case of blue-collar employees);
  • Transfer tax and stamp duty, as well as a real property tax that varies according to the region in which the property is based.

Legal entities are required to file the annual tax return no later than the final day of the seventh month following the end f their financial year (which can be the calendar year or another 12-month period).

An extension is possible upon request and, when working with one of our accountants, we will determine if this is in the best interest of the company.

Annual filing and payment is made electronically through a special portal and our team can give you more information on the mandatory registration with the portal.

Administrative penalties apply to companies that do not follow the tax law and these can have a value between EUR 50 and EUR 1,250 for every violation of the tax code. Our attorneys in Belgium can give you details about the applicable laws and these penalties.

Underpayments are subject to a surcharge which changes on a yearly basis and for 2022 it was set at 6.75%.

Companies in Belgium are also subject to a secret commissions tax which applies on hidden gains, such as the turnover that has not reported, or to payments to legal entities or other parties which have not been properly reported in due time.

By working with one of our accountants in Belgium, businessowners can make sure that they are not subject to the secret commissions tax, not other penalties that can apply for late or improper tax filing, reporting and payment.

How to choose an accountant in Belgium

Accountant or team of accounting specialists you choose to work with should have adequate experience and qualifications. Our team includes accountants that are included in the Institute for Tax Advisors and Accountants. This is the body that manages the register that includes all practitioners in the field and that holds the relevant qualifying examinations. Members need to observe a set of rules for good practice and professional ethics, as well as continue their professional development.

Some of the requirements for an accountant in Belgium are the following:

  • have a 3-year internship;
  • at least 7 years of practical experience;
  • pass the final examination;
  • in addition to the 3-year experience condition in auditing, auditors need to be aged below 65 years and be a citizen of an EU Member State.

Outsourcing the accounting services is common among companies of all sizes, as opposed to maintaining an in-house accountant or an accounting department in larger companies.

The company’s cash flow may not be suitable to keeping an in-house bookkeeper, meaning that one of the greatest advantages is that related to cost savings.

While the outsourced team will be preoccupied with keeping the company’s transaction records in order, the owner will have the needed time to focus on the business goals. What’s more, the quality is ensured when working with a professional CPA in Belgium.

Belgian companies that outsource their accounting services benefit from professional advice and guidance as needed, upon request, and they have access to reliable services.

Upon request, a team such as our own which includes experienced accountants in Belgium, will help you with information about implementing changes as per certain performance indicators, as well as setting up stock option plans for employees.

How to change the accountant in Belgium

Insufficient improper accounting services are detrimental to any type of business in Belgium. Observing the legal requirements is mandatory and the company founders or directors are the ones who are held liable for errors (whether material errors or not).

If you find that the accounting provider is unsatisfactory, you can terminate the services agreement. If you decide that wish to contract the services of a new team of accountants in Belgium, such as our own, you will need to verify the terms for termination in your signed services agreement. Perhaps a notice period is mandatory, however, you may be subject to special termination clauses if the accountant has made an error that directly affects your business.

Once you inform your former accountant that you will no longer be needing his/her services, the former services provider will need to forward all the accountancy documents in his/her possession at the time. In practice, it can be common for the new accountant and the old accountant to communicate and transfer your company’s documents between them.

You can choose to change your accountant in Belgium during the course of the tax year (if issues arise), or at the end/start of a new accounting period. In all cases, careful consideration should be given to meeting the mandatory annual filing requirements, by focusing on not having the change of accountants disrupt the filing deadlines for your company.

More than just accounting services

Our team is an integrative one, offering accounting solutions, legal advice from our lawyers in Belgium, as well as complete services for opening a company in Belgium.

One of the first steps investors take is to select a suitable business form. This choice will impact not only the company formation process, but also the ongoing tax and reporting requirements, as well as the need to perform audits and follow other rules. 

As part of our company formation services, our Belgian lawyers can help you with the following:

  • Choose the most suitable business form: entrepreneurs can choose work on their own, as sole traders, or open a company in Belgium; the latter is a recommended option because it allows for limited liability, however, it implies more complex accounting requirements (directly proportional with the size and type of legal entity chosen for incorporation);
  • Document drafting: from the company’s Articles and Memorandum of Incorporation to the employment agreements, our lawyers will assist with drafting and vetting documents;
  • Submissions: as needed, one of our attorneys can act as legal representative for key steps, such as making the needed submissions to for the registration of the company, or opening its bank account, whenever this is possible (and the submissions do not need to be made in person by the applicant);
  • Ongoing compliance: entrepreneurs may find various points within the lifetime of their business when they need to rely on the advice and solutions provided by a local team of legal experts; whenever you have questions about contract law, resolving disputes with shareholders, directors, or employees, IP rights, and how you need to address GDPR compliance, our team will be able to answer your questions.  

Our local team of attorneys includes specialists in business and corporate law, as well as legal practitioners focused on family and employment law, intellectual property law, data protection, and many other areas of law.

Contact us today if you wish to work with an accountant in Belgium. We will provide an initial consultation and will customize your accounting services according to your particular business needs.