Tax when inheriting a company

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Netherlands Chamber of Commerce, KVK
Netherlands Chamber of Commerce, KVK

Are you the heir of an entrepreneur? After the entrepreneur's death, you have to file tax returns for, for example, income tax and VAT. Read here which tax matters you will have to deal with, such as inheritance tax and substantial interest (aanmerkelijk belang).

Income tax return

You will receive a notice to file an income tax return. The Tax Administration will send you an F form for this purpose. Read how to complete the F form (in Dutch). Filing the tax return online is not possible, because the deceased’s DigiD will have been blocked.

Inheritance tax return

You will receive an invitation from the Tax Administration to file an inheritance tax return (in Dutch). Anyone who receives something from the inheritance has to pay a percentage over the received inheritance. This percentage depends on the value of the inheritance, including the business. And on the relationship with the business owner. For example, partners and children pay a lower percentage than other inheritors.

Submit a final VAT return

For VAT, you take the place of the deceased entrepreneur. This means that you take over all VAT rights and obligations. You will receive a letter from the Tax Administration stating that you may have to submit a final VAT return.

Substantial interest

Owning at least 5% of the shares of a private limited company (bv) or public limited company (nv) is called substantial interest (aanmerkelijk belang). Upon death, the substantial interest passes to you as an inheritor. You do not have to file a tax return on the profit from the substantial interest. This only applies if the shares become part of your private assets and you are subject to tax in the Netherlands. If you emigrate or transfer the shares to a company, the Tax Administration will settle with you immediately.

Inheritance tax

Once the estate is settled, as an inheritor you have to settle the inheritance tax. This is the tax on the value of the shares. With a high business value, this often means a large amount per inheritor. This can jeopardise the survival of the business if inheritance tax is paid from it. The law provides for deferral of payment under certain conditions. Then this tax must be paid in 10 equal annual instalments.

Continuing the business

Do you want to continue the inherited business? If you use the business succession scheme, you do not have to pay tax on a large part of the value of the business assets. Certain conditions (in Dutch) apply to this scheme.

See more information on the business succession scheme (in Dutch).

Questions relating to this article?

Please contact the Netherlands Chamber of Commerce, KVK