Frequently Asked Questions

Can I benefit from a withholding tax exemption?

There is an exemption from withholding tax on interest for loans to a start-up taking place through an alternative financing platform (credit crowdfunding). On the interest that is received annually from these loans (of at least 4 years), no withholding tax needs to be paid on the first tranche of €9,965 (due to indexation it is €15,320 for assessment year 2019) per year and per taxpayer. Normally, this withholding tax is 30%.

However, the conditions for benefiting from this exemption are very strict:

  • The exemption is only for beneficiaries who are natural persons (residents or non-residents) and who act outside the practice of their professional activity. Entrepreneurs and managers of a company acting as a private person can also benefit from this exemption from withholding tax on interest.

  • The loans must be contracted with a small company as defined in Article 15 of the Belgian Companies Code (= small companies are those companies with a legal personality that, on the balance sheet date of the last completed financial year, do not exceed one of the following criteria:

    • annual average number of employees: 50;
    • annual turnover excluding value-added tax: €9 000 000
    • Balance sheet total: €4 500 000).
  • The borrower must not have been registered for more than 48 months in the Crossroads Bank for Enterprises or in a similar register in another Member State of the European Economic Area.

  • The funds raised must be used to develop new economic projects. Refinancing loans are not taken into account.

  • The loans must have a minimum term of four years.

  • The loans must be contracted based on an annually payable interest rate.

  • The loan must be issued by a Belgian crowdfunding platform licensed as an alternative financing platform by the Financial Services and Markets Authority or must be issued by a regulated Belgian company or a crowdfunding platform governed by the law of another Member State of the European Economic Area that, by virtue of its status, is entitled to engage in such activity.