The Finance Ministry is increasing fines for companies that do not issue retail receipts in an effort to bolster state revenues. The increased penalties will start applying as of Monday, July 25, so as to maximize the effect on public coffers from summer inspections.
Tax officials who identify first-time violations in the issuance of receipts at a company will be able to impose fines that come to half of the value-added tax due but no less than 250 euros, with the minimum threshold rising to 500 euros for larger companies. Fines will be doubled in case of a recurrence of the offense within five years and quadrupled in the third instance.
The aim of the measure is to correct a long-standing problem. To date, for example, if a cafeteria was found to have failed to issue receipts amounting to 20 euros of VAT, then the fine inspectors should impose would come to just 10 euros. This acted as an incentive for entrepreneurs to avoid issuing receipts on a regular basis. Now this fine can be no smaller than 250 euros, regardless of the offense.
Ministry data, meanwhile, showed on Thursday that the expired debts of taxpayers to the state increased by another 300 million euros in June to reach 89.6 billion euros from 89.3 million in end-May. In the first six months of the year the debts have risen by almost 10 billion euros.