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When do I have to register as a self-employed person?

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Accelerated by the pandemic, the labor market has evolved and created new business channels far from the traditional fixed salary model. Many of these jobs have been fueled by the advancement of new technologies, such as B. Website design, internet sales, content writing on-line made-to-order, outsourcing, network distributed training products, and so on.

Sometimes the tasks are on time and those in charge don’t know how to handle their situation. In other cases, they do not want to take over their registration in the special scheme for the self-employed (RETA) for paying insignificant sums. Registration for this program includes a monthly self-employed fee (in many cases the so-called flat rate) and the issuance of invoices. And these documents, as a rule, must be attached to VAT and linked to a heading of economic activity.

The self-employed new registration fee is 60 euros in the first year and increases gradually in the following months until the end of the third pension. Without this tariff, the minimum monthly fee is 294 euros.

So the question arises as to when it will be necessary to register as a self-employed person. Although not required by law, it is common practice in commerce (as an unwritten rule) to avoid such registration for earnings below the minimum annual salary for occupations. This custom, supported by some Supreme Court rulings, has no legal basis: the Self-Employment Act states that the natural person who regularly carries out an activity on his own account is self-employed, without such a definition depending on the amount of income . Therefore, the frequency of the task is of paramount importance. Marcos González, associate at Cremades & Calvo-Sotelo Abogados and specialist in tax law, emphasizes that “the rule is subject to a certain degree of subjectivity, since it will be something as relative as the habit at work that establishes the obligation to get high give social insurance”. And he cites the numerous as an example freelancer who occasionally combine their employment with projects on online platforms and do not know how to properly fulfill their duties.

Thus, an illustrator who invoices monthly must apply for registration in the Special Regime for the Self-Employed (RETA), but under the criterion of regularity the procedure would not be required for an editor who wrote a specific report for a media outlet. Communication.

To avoid registration, some taxpayers choose to collect fees for their activities through a cooperative, but this practice is subject to oversight by the Labor Inspectorate. The company registers the prospect as an employee (usually for a few days) and invoices the client for the work done, deducting the relevant taxes. In return, the employee receives a wage slip from the cooperative equal to what he would have received if he had worked on his own account. Natalia Sanz, head of the Entrepreneurship Department, a body attached to the Ministry of Economy, Finance and Employment of the Autonomous Community of Madrid, points out that “this use has been declared fraudulent by the Labor Inspectorate, the General Fund of Social Security and the Ministry of Labor and Social Economy, especially since the inspection of the Factoo cooperative, which was dissolved by the Labor Department”. This entity invoiced the work of professionals who did not participate in self-employment registration.

The problem, recognizes Eduardo Abad, president of the Union of Professionals and Autonomous Workers (UPTA), is that the regulations are not filling that gap. “Thousands of self-employed people without registering as self-employed have a rather ambiguous situation: they should definitely join social security and the Treasury because they engage in repetitive activities, even with very little economic value.” make a special contribution to moving from a shadow economy to a real economy in many cases”.

The ordinance that governs the billing requirement states that professionals must issue an invoice for their work, whether sporadic or not. Asunción Domínguez, Head of the Tax Agency’s Special Service, recalls that this obligation “is unavoidable, for example when the recipient is an entrepreneur or a freelancer, a public administration or a non-commercial legal person, among many other assumptions”. The expert adds that there are certain exceptions, such as educational activities (schooling, languages, etc.). However, he emphasizes that even in these cases an invoice must be issued if the recipient requests it for tax reasons.

Marcos González confirms the need to clarify the legal framework: “Due to the ambiguity or vagueness of the regulations, it is appropriate that the worker is properly informed or professionally advised.” And she suggests other solutions: an attractive and low-cost flat rate, the option of registering and deregistering with social security on various occasions within a year, or the so-called “contribution check”. In any case, he concludes, “in the face of this reality, it would be prudent to put in place an effective contributory system to mitigate some of the informal economy, improve collection and offer guarantees to workers engaged in sporadic activities.”

The Thermomix model

The German company Vorwerk, owner of Thermomix kitchen robots, has a network of non-employee salespeople. Six years ago, a real estate agent who only earned 300 euros from her sales was sentenced to pay three monthly installments of the self-employed’s remuneration. In contrast, a Supreme Court ruling in 2020 declared a similar number to be “negligible.” At present, the traders who offer these products are pushing for their registration as self-employed if the interprofessional minimum salary is exceeded and understand this limit as an indicator of the regularity required by the self-employment ordinance.

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Source elpais.com

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