Per diems and allowances
Easiness to justifyDeducted by81 % of independentsFrequency5-10x per year
Per-diems are an excellent fiscal lever… when used wisely.
The self-employed as natural persons are not entitled to deduct “per diems”.
These daily allowances apply only to head of enterprises and workers sent abroad by their employer on punctual missions.
They can deduct flat-rate daily allowances for ” work trips “, i.e. short-term missions, of a minimum of 10 hours and a maximum of 30 days.
Flat-rate allowances are not taxable as long as their amount does not exceed the amount of the allowances paid by the State to its civil servants, and if they indeed correspond to days spent abroad!
These allowances also have a very precise definition: they do not cover housing or transport. They cover meals and out-of-pocket expenses.
In the event that the accommodation costs include meals and/or out-of-pocket expenses, the daily allowance must be reduced. Thus, if breakfast, lunch, dinner or out-of-pocket expenses are included in the accommodation and/or reimbursed elsewhere, the daily allowance is reduced by 15%, 35%, 45% or 5% respectively.
The total amount of the deductible daily allowance varies according to the country: the administration accepts that it is based on the allowances that the FPS Foreign Affairs allocates to its expatriate staff. The list published in the Belgian Official Journal is available here, by country: http://www.ejustice.just.fgov.be/eli/arrete/2018/07/02/2018040199/moniteur