We represented a general contractor of office projects in a case concerning VAT reverse charge on construction services examined by a Province Administrative Court (WSA) of Krakow. On 1 December 2017, the Court shared our standpoint and admitted that no dictionary definition was to be used to accurately interpret the term “subcontractor” because it was defined in other disciplines of the law, in particular the construction law. Arrangements made between a party renting office premises and the owner of the office building in respect of fees for increased standard of the premises or the issues of financial participation of the owner in the costs of finishing the premises by the lessee did not result in a shift of the roles of those entities in the chain of transactions. They are not undertaken under a contract for construction works but under a lease agreement. The party which, as a result of such arrangements, was invoiced with the costs, did not become a project owner and the party acting hitherto as the project owner did not become a contractor. Consequently, the general contractor which issued invoices including VAT did not become a subcontractor, which would result in changing the method of taxation into a reverse charge.
The Court thus opposed the standpoint presented in official explanations and interpretations of the Ministry of Development and Finance, issued to date. This judgment helps simplify the rules of VAT payment by general contractors. The judgment is not final.
We carry out personal data audits in connection with the approaching date of entry into force of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). With the outcome of the audits, we have helped a number of clients develop and implement personal data protection policy and documentation to ensure adequate level of data protection and possibility to demonstrate compliance with the new requirements.
KSP lawyers provided advice to a producer of natural lemonade and owner of John Lemon brand in a dispute with Yoko Ono. The dispute pertained to potential infringement of the right in “John Lennon” trademark, registered by the European Union Intellectual Property Office in December 2016. The John Lemon lemonade producer registered its trademark in 2014. Negotiations have led to a settlement which reconciled the interests of both parties. The owner of John Lemon brand considered it of essence to agree a period for sale of its products offered under the disputed brand, so as to be able to sell John Lemon lemonades throughout the summer season and to prepare for rebranding.
In August, KSP completed an analysis of the organisational and legal model of the Road Transport Inspection for the purpose of the project of “Enhancement of the Potential of Road Transport Inspection” intended to strengthen the safety on Polish roads. KSP analysed the existing organisational model of the Road Transport Inspectorate (ITD) and the current legislation pertaining to road offences and identified new legal and organisational solutions.
Representing an American automotive company in tax proceedings, we were able to effectively recover more than PLN 1 million of excess tax withheld at source on account of services provided in Poland and received royalties.
Our tax advisors have prepared an analysis of tax effects of a public-private partnership for a capital city of one of Poland’s southern provinces. The project consisted in construction of municipal transportation shelters in return for advertising space. The solution, accomplished through private-public cooperation in transportation infrastructure management, is still a pioneering one, and the tax aspects required an in-depth and multi-variant analysis.
KSP represented an entrepreneur operating the business of municipal waste collection and management. Pursuant to the current legislation, in particular the Act of 13 September 1996 on Maintaining Cleanliness and Order in Municipalities, the business of municipal waste collection is a regulated activity and it requires an entry in the register of regulated activity maintained by the head of a municipality. In this case, the head of the municipality held that the Company operated the municipal waste collection business without the required entry in the register of regulated activity, and imposed a fine of over PLN 100 thousand thereon. The Local Appeals Board (Samorządowe Kolegium Odwoławcze) maintained the decision in force. Acting on behalf of the Company, KSP filed a complaint with the Province Administrative Court (WSA) presenting some elaborated arguments against the decision of the first and second instance authorities. Having examined the subject matter, the WSA considered the complaint reasonable, and cancelled both of the aforesaid decisions.
For market-leading Polish group in the energy sector we completed a series of training courses in the field of transfer pricing and preparation of transfer pricing documentations. The purpose of the training was to introduce the new regulatory requirements on transfer pricing for persons involved in negotiating, concluding and executing transactions with affiliates, financial and accounting co-ordinators in subsidiaries and financial and accounting specialists. During training we discussed on examples the rules for the preparation of tax documentations according to the new standards.
The case involved a taxable person who benefitted from a real property tax exemption for a new investment project, based on a resolution issued by the Town Council. The resolution provided that one of the conditions to be met in order to benefit from the exemption was to submit a report according to a specific template by the 15th of January of the year subject to the exemption (and during 5 years from the last year subject to the exemption). According to the resolution, the entrepreneur forfeited the right to the exemption if, for example, the report was not filed on time or the details contained therein were false. Our Client submitted the required report after the deadline (the report was filed on 26 January). The Authority held that the failure to submit the report on time led to forfeiture of the right to benefit from the exemption. In an appeal against the decision of the first instance authority, we pointed out that the provisions of the resolution were worded in an imprecise manner, and the taxpayer must not bear the negative effects of defective legislation. We also emphasized that a delay in submission of the report may not be considered equivalent to failure to submit the same. The court shared our opinion, repealed the decision of the first instance authority, and discontinued proceedings in the case.