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Poles report to the tax office after communion. “Malice and Ignorance”

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The tax office may demand tax on expensive First Communion gifts. How will the tax office know about the gift? Most often from a neighbor or other “well-wishers”. Offices receive several thousand such denunciations every year. – There is no such thing as a communion settlement. We look at the gifts received separately and, if necessary, we submit a separate report taking into account gifts from specific guests – comments Martyna Myszkowska from the Myszkowska Wachowska Tax Office.

Laptops, drones, smartwatches worth several thousand zlotys, tablets, jewelry (preferably gold). And envelopes with money – from several hundred to even PLN 1,500. First Communion gifts for children are not the cheapest.

There is a certain risk associated with this – information about sudden enrichment may reach the tax office. According to Grzegorz Głowala from the Third Tax Office in Lublin in an interview with the “Strefa Biznesu” portal, the number of denunciations increases around holidays and family celebrations. Including communion.

– There is no such thing as settlement of communion – comments Martyna Myszkowska from the Myszkowska Wachowska Tax Office. – We look at the gifts received separately and, if necessary, we submit a separate report taking into account gifts from specific guests – he adds.

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A denunciation after communion? It can happen, but…

We ask about communion reports at the National Tax Administration. – Anyone who has information about non-compliance with tax law can report such irregularities to the National Hotline number or electronically using the reporting form – says junior trainee Justyna Pasieczyńska, spokeswoman for the Head of the National Tax Administration.

According to the spokeswoman, the denunciations are based on malice and ignorance. – Communion gifts vary in value, it all depends on the wealth of the guests or family. Such donations from the immediate family are tax-free, explains Pasieczyska. – However, please remember that above the amount of PLN 36,120 you must report the received donation to the tax office – he adds.

He explains that the person reporting irregularities will not receive feedback on how the matter was handled. In accordance with the regulations, this data is protected by fiscal secrecy.

How much should I put in the envelope as a Holy Communion gift?

However, the spokeswoman does not confirm an increase in the number of reports in May or June (i.e. during the First Communion season), although, as she emphasizes, the office only has access to data from Masovia.

What do this year's statistics on reporting irregularities look like? From the beginning of January to mid-May, over 7,000 were recorded. anonymous reports to tax offices. Throughout 2023, there were almost 15,000 of them. According to Dziennik.pl, reports most often concern the lack of a receipt, sales bypassing the cash register or irregularities in the employment of employees. And also undisclosed sources of income.

A gift, i.e. a donation

We ask Martyna Myszkowska from the Myszkowska Wachowska Tax Office about the settlement of communion. – There is no separate category or tax specifically for gifts. Gifts (and not only communion gifts) are subject to: inheritance tax and donations and are treated as donations that must be taxed by the recipient – he explains.

In the case of inheritance and gift tax, there are three tax groups:

1) group I – spouse, descendant, ascendant, stepson, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, siblings, stepfather, stepmother and parents-in-law; In this case tax-free allowance that's 36 thousand PLN 120.

2) group II – descendants of siblings, siblings of parents, descendants and spouses of stepchildren, spouses of siblings and siblings of spouses, spouses of siblings of spouses, spouses of other descendants; the tax-free amount is PLN 27,000. PLN 90

3) group III – persons with a further degree of kinship – cousins, stepmother's or stepfather's family, unrelated persons – friends, colleagues and co-workers, all other persons not listed in the above two tax groups. The tax-free amount is PLN 5,733.

If we receive a donation whose value exceeds the tax-free amount, we are subject to tax liability.

– Importantly, the tax-free amount is available to donations received from one person within a total of 5 years – adds Martyna Myszkowska. – If gifts received from one person do not exceed the limit during this time, no tax will be charged. For each person from whom we receive a gift, we must determine the tax group and, therefore, the annual statutory limit separately, he comments.

An official will help

There are also gifts (donations) from loved ones, which are treated even more leniently by the regulations. – Donations received from the so-called group zero are always exempt from tax (regardless of the amount) if the obligation to report them and properly document them is fulfilled – says Myszkowska. – The act includes spouses, descendants (e.g. children, grandchildren), ascendants (e.g. parents, grandparents), stepchild, siblings, stepfather and stepmother in the zero group – he adds.

But there's a catch. – In order for the tax exemption to apply, a gift received from a person included in group zero must be reported to the tax office within 6 months and, additionally, the donation (gift), if it is in the form of cash, must be transferred to an account and not in the form of cash . In practice, communion gifts received are most often in the form of cash, which, according to the tax office, does not qualify even a gift from the immediate family for total tax exemption – explains Myszkowska.

Settlements for minors are made by parents or legal guardians. According to the expert, the child's guardians should be able to report a gift from a First Communion guest themselves, without the help of a specialist. Donations should be reported on form SD-Z2 (group zero) or SD-3. – If you have any questions or doubts as to the correctness of your declaration, you can make an appointment at your tax office. The official will then check the correctness of the form – concludes Myszkowska.

Author:Natalia Szostak/ToL

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