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Expatriate Healthcare News: New tax requirements for expats in Spain

Expatriates living in Spain will need to declare any assets held outside of the country worth more than €50,000 (£41,500) due to a change in tax reporting requirements.

Those who fail to acknowledge such assets could face huge fines under the new anti fraud law, Ley 7/2012, which sees increased penalties for those who commit fraud and new measures to collect tax debts.

A spokesperson from Blevin Franks tax specialists said: "This is a new, additional requirement for Spanish taxpayers. You remain obliged, as always, to also fully declare your annual worldwide income for income tax purposes, and your taxable worldwide assets for wealth tax purposes."

The corresponding paperwork has also been updated with a new form produced, which must be completed by the end of the first trimester of each year.

Since the system is new, this has been extended for the first year to stretch until April 30th, but the deadline will be March 31st on subsequent years.

The types of asset which must be declared include money held in financial institutions, real estate, shares and securities, and life insurance policies.

A spokesperson explained: "You need to declare these assets if you are the owner, the beneficiary, or an authorised signatory. This includes assets held by a trust or fiduciary. If the value of your total assets in each class is less than €50,000, you are not obliged to report."

He went on to say that there is no need to report such assets every year, as long as they are reported once, unless the value of all reportable assets increases by €20,000 or more by the next annual deadline.

"If you fail to report any assets as required by the new law, the costs will be very high once discovered," the spokesman warned.

"The undeclared income arising from the asset will be deemed to arise in the last tax year which is not statute barred – four years in most cases. This effectively abolishes the statute of limitations."

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