by Andrew Brett WatsonPublished in Friends
If you Speak English, dealing with Tax in Spain can be a hassle, especially if you're accountants don't (speak English that is). I had some outstanding tax returns and the Spanish government were no help showing me where to file them. Nor were the accountant's I asked. I didn't get a good result until I hired some English speaking accountants (Spain).
Let me explain. I speak Spanish, pretty well actually. I'm also a senior manager working for a company where only Spanish is spoken. I also know how to fill out and file a tax return, well, that was until I tried to do it in Spain. Ever since I was registered to pay and collect IVA tax, the Spanish tax department had given me no assistance in filing a tax return. I quite honestly couldn't find out how to do it. I learnt how to fill out a tax return but all I could do was generate a pdf from the online form and no one seamed to be able to tell me how to file it.
It took two years to finally be told that the pdf should taken to the bank and tax could be paid directly there. However I'm not sure if thats true or not, because I never got to try it out. As I had just started a project, I had higher expenses than income (while I built up stock). It seams funny now but in three years of pro-actively working on it, I was no closer to filing the returns. As it turns out the Spanish tax department was not helpful about filing my returns but they were doing a great job reminding me they were overdue. The tax department actually told me that it wasn't their job to show me how to file a tax return, an accountant was needed for that. When I went to <three> accountants they all complained they needed something from the tax department, a number, a form always and excuse. Fearing things would get out of hand (week actually they already were), I ceased trading simply to put a stop to the tax returns (thanks to my bad experiences with Spanish taxes, my heart wasn't in it).
Then (after three years) I had an idea. What if I looked for some English speaking Accountants? It turned out to be a very good idea indeed.
While searching for English Speaking Accountants in general, hoping to find someone in Toledo, I found Eurorevision (in Madrid) and to be honest I wasn't expecting much. I simply wasn't expecting them to be any different just because they speak a different language and I'm not saying that who they were or what language they spoke played a role, but Eurorevision solved my problem and they solved it fast. They weren't just english speaking accountants, it turns out, they were GOOD accountants.
Maybe it was as simple as being better able to communicate in English what I needed but I'm pretty sure it was simply about having professional accountants who could deliver. Maybe I just had bad luck before.
Personally, I'm careful not to make recommendations because I often suffer from an insecurity that there might be something better out there. If however I get the chance to do due diligence then I'm please to help others by pointing them in the right direction. Although it's not the type of due diligence I would prefer to endure, after three years I can happily say the people at Eurovision fixed everything in a matter of days (Thank Rami!).
For your information, Eurovision offer the following services in English and Spanish:
- Audit the annual accounts - mandatory
- Audit the annual accounts - voluntary
- Limited review
- Agreed procedures
- Audit of Grants
- Internal Audit
- Due Diligence
- Draw up a chart of accounts to suit your requirements
- Control Accounts As per your
- Inventory control
- Age of receivables
- Webcast of all taxes
- Presentation of annual fiscal data
- Preparation of the official books for submission to Companies
- Preparation and submission of annual accounts to Companies
- Preparation and submission of Corporation Tax
- Translation and presentation of the Spanish language and template to desired
- Coding ledger accounts to facilitate consolidation
- Registering the company with the Social Security
- Preparation of the monthly payroll and the Social Security deductions
- Advice at the time of contracting, renewing contracts and grants which are available
- Preparing and registering formal employment contracts
- Preparation of tax declarations, including foreign employees, and issuing the annual tax certificates
- Preparation of sanctions and reprimand letters
- Calculation of termination indemnities and compliance with legal formalities
- Assistance at the labour tribunals and courts and at the time of labour inspections
- Advice and support during payroll audits
- Preparing the accounting summaries of labour and Social Security costs
- Company incorporation
- Fiscal address
- Nominal Shareholder
- Director or secretary of the board
- Perform administrative functions (billing, banking, etc.)
- Assist external auditors
- Attend a tax audit
They will continue to be my accountants, that is, if I have the guts to go back in to business in Spain. I know one thing, now that I have English speaking accountants, I'm more likely to do so.