EU Commission requests SPAIN to correctly apply the SEPA Regulation for tax payments

The Commission has today decided to send a letter of formal notice to Spainon the grounds that Spanish tax legislation prevents individuals from paying their taxes through direct debits if their bank account is from a bank outside Spain.

To date, Spanish law states that an individual’s payment service provider, i.e. a bank, needs to be authorised by the Spanish tax authorities as a “collaborating entity”.

In practice, this is either very difficult or cumbersome for foreign payment service providers to establish. As a result, these rules actually prevent the use of EU bank accounts outside Spain.

This is contrary to the provisions ofthe SEPA Regulation (Regulation (EU) No 260/2012). The SEPA Regulation establishes technical and business requirements for credit transfers and direct debits in euro, underpinning the functioning of the Single Market for the processing of payment transactions in euro.

Spain has four months now to reply to the arguments raised by the Commission. Otherwise, the Commission may decide to send a reasoned opinion.

Daniel Ferrie

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