Date: 9th April 2020 - last update: 13th May 2020
In the last weeks, there have been pubished a lot of regulations, that supposedly also are aimed to help the companies and freelancers who struggle economically because of the Corona-measures of lockdown.
As some of my clients are freelancers, I want to give an overview about the actual state and maybe that helps some other freelancers, too.
The typical situation is that a freelancer now has the same costs as usual (office rent, monthly bills, maybe even employees), but less or no income at all.
This leads to mainly 3 questions at the moment, as far as I can see:
1. How can I not pay taxes?
2. How can I not pay social security contributions?
3. How can I get help from the government?
First of all, the deadlines have NOT been changed, every tax return has to be submitted on the same dates as without the Corona-situation. For freelancers the next important date is the 20th April, when the VAT (Modelo 303) and the income tax partial payment (Modelo 130) are due. So please submit your tax returns on time!
Also: there is no possibility of not paying at all.
Now the good news: you can postpone the payment (“aplazamiento”) or ask for a payment in various instalments (“fraccionamiento"). This must be done when you submit the corresponding declarations.
Here I leave you the link of the Tax Office, where the whole procedure is explained.
Not paying at all is possible, if your activity has been legally suspended during the alarm situation or if your loss in income was huge. I come back to this at question 3.
If your activity has not been legally suspended, you can apply for a postponement (=“aplazamiento”) or for a moratorium (= “moratoria”) of the contributions.
All the information I state under this point, you can find under the following link of the Social Security.
A moratorium (“moratoria”) means that you pay 6 month later without any interests, and is possible for the months of May, June and July. If you apply for it, you would have to pay those contributions in the months of November and December of 2020, and January 2021 (together with the contributions of those months).
To be able to apply for the moratorium, there are some conditions that need to be fulfilled, which you can find in the corresponding instruction: Orden ISM/371/2020, de 24 de abril.
A postponement (“aplazamiento”) means that you can ask to pay the contributions of April, May and June of 2020 later, it can be more than 6 months later. In this case, you have to pay default interests of 0,5%. To ask for the postponement it is a condition that you have currently no debts already postponed with the social security.
For the month of April the only possibility is to ask for a postponement. The deadline is the 10th of April!
The application can be made directly by yourself, and due to the situation inclusive without any form of special authentication.
Important: That you apply for this in April does not have any effect on the other upcoming contributions, you have to do the application for each month separately, always from the 1st until the 10th of the corresponding month!
For the months of May and June you can either apply for a postponement, or for a moratorium.
To be able to ask for a moratorium, you must fulfil the established conditions: basically it is that your activity was not suspended due to the alarm situation, but that it is one of the determined activities stated in the regulation:
Códigos de la Clasificación Nacional de Actividades Económicas (CNAE-2009):
119 (Otros cultivos no perennes).
129 (Otros cultivos perennes).
1812 (Otras actividades de impresión y artes gráficas).
2512 (Fabricación de carpintería metálica).
4322 (Fontanería, instalaciones de sistemas de calefacción y aire acondicionado).
4332 (Instalación de carpintería).
4711 (Comercio al por menor en establecimientos no especializados, con predominio en productos alimenticios, bebidas y tabaco).
4719 (Otro comercio al por menor en establecimientos no especializados).
4724 (Comercio al por menor de pan y productos de panadería, confitería y pastelería en establecimientos especializados).
7311 (Agencias de publicidad).
8623 (Actividades odontológicas).
9602 (Peluquería y otros tratamientos de belleza).
Regarding the contributions of July, you can only ask for a moratorium, applying for it during the 1st and 10th of July.
If your activity has been legally suspended during the alarm situation, you can get a special payment (“prestación extraordinaria por cese de actividad”) of 70% of your “Base reguladora” for the month of March and the months that may come until the end of the alarm situation.
If your activity has been legally suspended, it is not necessary to prove a loss of income.
If your activity was NOT legally suspended, you have to prove a loss of income of 75% in the precedent month of the application of this help, compared with the average of the 6 months before (or the 12 months before, depending on your activity).
You can ask for this help only if:
You don´t have to do a “baja” (=deregister as autónomo) to apply for this.
Important: If you get this special payment granted, during its validity you do NOT have to pay any contributions to the social security, and the months are still counted as if you were contributing.
Here you can find more information about this help from the Social Security.
Important: you have to apply for this with your Mutua, not directly with the Social security. So contact your Mutua to see what documents you need to prepare.
This article is intended to help freelancers who are struggeling with the Corona-Crisis, to give an overview about what they can do. To summarize: You can postpone taxes and social security contributions and maybe inclusive ask for an extra payment to help you.
- The tax postponement has to be applied for with the submission of the declarations (at the same deadlines as usual).
- For the social security contributions it is possible to ask for a postponement of more than 6 months, paying an interest of 0,5% if you currently have no postponed debts with the Social security. You have to apply for this postponement for each month separately during the 1st and 10th of the month. This postponement is possible for the months of April, May and June of 2020.
- For the social security contributions it is also possible to ask for a moratorium of 6 months, without paying interests. You have to apply for this moratorium for each month separately during the 1st and 10th of the month. This moratorium is possible for the months of May, June and July of 2020. To ask for the moratorium, your activity must be within the stated activities (see above).
- There is a special help for freelancers, named “prestación extraordinaria por cese de actividad”. You can apply for this if you were registered and up to date with your payments to the social security.
If your activity has been legally suspended you do not have to prove a loss of income.
If your activity was not legally suspended, you must prove a loss in income of at least 75% in comparison with the average of the last 6 or 12 months before. This help must be applied for with your Mutua.