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Maternity benefit: how to claim a refund for taxes paid in excess

When a working women gives birth has right to receive a maternity benefit paid from the Social Security. This benefit is exempt from taxation, but until a recent sentence from the Supreme Court, there were still doubts in the interpretation of this section of the IRPF Law.

Below we explain how this controversy developed and ended, but above all, we inform you about how to claim for the IRPF paid in excess for this income at the time.

Supreme Court ruling: exemption from maternity benefit

The controversy over whether the maternity benefit was exempt from tax in the income statement has lasted a few years.
The Judgment of October 26, 2016 of the High Court of Justice of Andalusia ruled in favor of the taxation of this benefit as work performance, contradicting the Judgment of July 6, 2016 of the Court of Justice of Madrid.

The Central Economic-Administrative Court, in its resolution of March 7, 2017, gave the reason to the High Court of Justice of Andalusia, explaining that “the maternity benefit paid by the Social Security has the function of replacing the normal remuneration, not exempt in the IRPF, that the taxpayer would obtain by his habitual work and that has stopped perceiving when enjoying the corresponding permission”.

In disagreement with this interpretation, the Judgment of the Court of Justice of Madrid of June 29, 2017 again insisted that the position of the TEAC wasn’t justified and reaffirmed its position regarding the exemption.

To end this disparity of interpretations, the Supreme Court ruled on October 3, 2018 that the public maternity benefit perceived from the Social Security is exempt of IRPF”.

Requirement to claim the de returns of IRPF for maternity benefit

Deadlines for requesting a refund for maternity benefit

The return of IRPF for any reason has a term of 4 years before its prescription. This 4 years counts since the following day from the deadline of submission of the income tax return for the year to be rectified. If the statement was submitted out of time, it is counted from the day following its presentation.

This means that until ending of June 2019, the amounts paid for this concept on the statements up to 2014, which ended on June 30, 2015, can be claimed through the process that the AEAT has set up in its website.

For the income perceived in 2018, we must wait until the IRPF statement (the next months of April, May and June 2019) to be able to regularize the situation and to claim for the devolution of undue withholdings.

Who can claim the return of IRPF for the maternity benefit?

Those persons whose maternity benefit was taxed in their IRPF statements and they supposed a higher payment to the Treasury or they were returned less money than they should.

Not only mothers can claim the return, since the men who shared the maternity benefit are also included in this assumption.
In the case of paternity benefit there is no final judgment. Even so, the Supreme Court has equated both cases on other occasions, so if you go to court is presumable that they will agree with you.

How to claim the return to the Treasury for the maternity benefit

You can claim the rectification in the income statement through the Electronic Office (“Sede Electronica”) of the Tax Agency or in one of the Administrations of the Tax Agency.

Keep in mind that it is possible that you may have received the maternity benefit in two fiscal years, so you will have to request the correction in the two statements.

If you want to avoid complications and that these procedures are as quick and simple as possible contact us. We also deal with paternity benefit returns. And we made sure that the statement yow want to claim was well done, since the Treasury is going to review it and if any error is found it can be harmful. Avoid headaches!

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