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How does it work?
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1. I worked in Belgium and paid taxes. Can I get them refunded?
Everybody who works abroad has to pay income tax. Under certain conditions, you can refund some of the taxes you (your employer) paid. We refund income tax from Belgium.
2. What does “tax refund” mean?
A refund means that your employer paid more taxes on your behalf than was necessary, and you can claim that excess money back from the tax office.
By filing a tax return, you are actually reporting to the Belgian Tax Office how much you earned as gross income and how much you paid in taxes while you stayed in Belgium
3. How much income tax is paid from your income?
4. What documents do you need for your tax refund?
In order to receive your income tax refund as quickly as possible and to apply for the highest amount, you need to have:
Power of Attorney
A copy of your earning document Fiche
EWR (or equivalent document) proving your income in other countries
Copy of your ID card/passport
A copy of your Marriage Certificate (if applicable) and your spouse’s ID
If you have any children, a copy of their Birth Certificate (if applicable)
5. What is a Fiche?
The Fiche 281.10 is a form that each employer has to give to his employees at the end of the year, which reports the employee's annual wage and the taxes deducted from each paycheck. The Fiche is not based on the fiscal year, but reports the income in a calendar year (January 1 to December 31).
Sometimes, depending on your personal/fiscal situation, you may also receive a Fiche 281.13 (about unemployment benefits) or a Fiche provided by ONVA (national office of annual vacations - it is called LJU in German and LJV in Dutch) about paid holidays or a Fiche 281.18 about sick pay or other allowances.
All of them are forms proving your income for a given tax year and therefore you need them in order to submit your tax declaration.
6. What if you do not have all the necessary documents?
Even if you do not have all of the documents mentioned above, you can still apply for your tax refund. We offer a “replacement” service - we will contact your former employers and will claim copies of your payment documents as your certified tax agent.
7. How many years back can I file my tax refund?
You can go as far back as 3 years from the year in which you apply.
8. How long does it take to receive my tax refund?
On average it takes 3 to 6 months for tax returns to be processed by the tax office and 2 more months after processing until you get your income tax refund.
The actual time may vary on a case by case basis.
9. When is the deadline for filing the tax return?
Generally, you have one/two months to complete the tax return form and send it back to the tax office. In any case, the deadline for submission is on the declaration itself and it is usually one/two months after the date of dispatch of the form.
Residents and non-residents have different deadlines:
Residents → the forms are sent to taxpayers around April/May, so the deadline is usually end of June.
Non-residents → the forms are sent around September/October, so they usually have a deadline in November.
10. What happens if I do not file the tax return before the deadline?
If the tax return is not filed or it is filed after the deadline, the tax office may proceed to an automatic taxation calculated on the basis of the information they have and a tax increase may also be applied.
The automatic taxation can be calculated up to 3 years after the relevant tax year.
A tax increase may also be applied.
11. Why is your tax calculation different from the actual Tax Office calculation?
In some cases, tax office officials calculate the tax on your tax return higher or lower than the Tax Office shows in the final calculation.
What are the most frequent causes?
The Tax Office had different data on your record (your employer reported different data than you have on your Fiche )
Your employer wrongly paid more/less than was necessary
You may have some debt/overpayment from previous year(s)