The 2020 financial reporting period, like last year, is in the shadow of COVID-19. This does not make things easier for enterprises, accountants or auditors. However, a significant change in the deadline for publishing the financial statements, similar to last year, is not expected this year. That is, as a general rule, the deadline for publishing the 2020 financial statements for the year ended 31 December 2020 and the related returns remains 31 May 2021.
Extension to reporting deadline
If an application referring to difficulties caused by COVID-19 is filed to the tax authority until 30 June, the cimrcumstances shall be taken into consideration with more emphasis. The Ministry of Finance is trying by this means to help those taxpayers and their accountants and auditors who, due to the pandemic, find it diffcult to meet the original deadline of 31 May through no fault of their own. In addition to the financial report, data subjects can thus be exempted from the legal consequences of late filing of four types of returns and the transfer pricing documentation.
A sample application for penalty relief for certain tax-related deadlines can be downloaded from the website of the Hungarian tax authority (only in Hungarian).
An application for penalty relief for late filing of tax return shall be admissible only if the taxpayer:
- submits his tax return within 15 days after the end of the impediment,
- submits his application for penalty relief at the same time as his return.
If the tax authority grants the application, it considers that the missed deadline has been met and, if necessary, amends or revokes its decision or repeats certain procedural steps.
Corporate tax, small business tax, innovation contribution and income tax of energy suppliers must be paid when the application is submitted.
Default penalty can be avoided until 30 June
State Secretary for Tax Affairs Norbert Izer said in a startement that the tax authority will assess these applications quickly and fairly. In this way, data subjects can be relieved of the legal consequences of not complying with the deadline for publishing the financial statements. Late returns must be filed with the application, taxes paid and any payment difficulties reported at the same time.
It is also improtant to see and understand the other side, i.e. the creditors, the other players in the economy, who can obtain important information about the economic situation of the companies from the published financial statements. It may also help to restart the economy if the 2020 data are available to others with relatively little delay compared to the original deadline.
For public interest entites, transparency and creditor protection requirements are much stricter and therefore continue to be subject to general tax administration rules.