Royal Decree-Law 19/2020 published, which brings together urgent measures in various areas of our country’s struggle against COVID-19.
Some of those previously decreed are extended, such as those in the agricultural sector and in order to alleviate the impact of the crisis on the Spanish productive fabric, new decisions are added in the labour, economic and tax fields, and also strengthen the protection of the groups most exposed in this crisis, such as health care.
We outline the new economic measures in the fight against the consequences of COVID-19
• The period of deferral of taxes for SMEs and self-employed persons without interest increases to four months.
• A loan of 16.500 million to the General Treasury of Social Security and an extraordinary loan of 14.000 million is approved.
• The coverage is extended to the staff of health centres who have contracted the virus so that their benefits are considered as occupational contingency arising from an accident at work.
• The flexibility to cover temporary agricultural employment is extended by three months and a two-year work permit is provided to young foreigners employed in the countryside.
• The suspension of telephone portability is lifted and a procedure for the payment of defaults to operators is facilitated.
Deferral of tax obligations
Increase from three to four months so that SMEs and self-employed can defer payment of their tax obligations without paying interest and thereby avoid treasury tensions and provide liquidity. This was one of the first steps taken by the Government to combat COVID-19 on 12 March, when it was established that SMEs and self-employed could postpone these payments up to a maximum of EUR 30,000 for six months, with three months shortfall.
The adaptations for the presentation of the corporate tax declaration to the reality caused by the pandemic are also introduced, allowing those companies that have not been able to approve their annual accounts before the end of the period for the declaration of this Tax, to submit it with the accounts available at that time. A special regime is also provided for the submission of another declaration, without surcharges, when the annual accounts have been approved.
Resources for Social Security
Given the foreseeable reduction in the system’s revenues from the initial forecasts, the approved Decree-Law also includes important measures to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on the Social Security accounts, providing it with resources.
As they are:
• Loan to the General Treasury of Social Security, amounting to EUR 16 billion, with the aim of ensuring adequate coverage of social security obligations.
• Extraordinary credit in the Ministry of Inclusion, Social Security and Migration for an amount of EUR 14,002 million to balance the impact on the Social Security accounts derived from COVID @-@ 19, especially with the ERTEs approved and the benefits for termination of activity for the self-employed to reduce the effects of the pandemic on employment.
• Two credit supplements motivated by the double budget extension of EUR 99 million and EUR 272 million are included to supplement non-contributory benefits and to the dependent child benefit, respectively.
The extraordinary measures to promote temporary agricultural employment, as provided for in the Royal Decree-Law of 7 April 30, were extended until 30 September 2020. With this three-month extension, which covers until the end of several more active campaigns, such as bone fruit or summer crops, and ensures the availability of labour to meet the needs of farmers and livestock farmers, due to the health restrictions on the travel of workers from other countries carrying out agricultural work as seasonal workers, as a result of COVID-19.
In this same area, an additional provision is included which will allow, after the end of the validity of their current work permit, a residence and work permit for young foreigners in a regular situation with a non-profit residence permit under Royal Decree-Law 13/2020.
It shall be valid for two years, renewable for two years, and shall be valid throughout the national territory and without sectoral or activity limits, without prejudice to the fact that, for access to long-term residence, all periods of legal and continuous residence shall be taken into account, with this or other authorisations of which it has been the holder.
Increased coverage of health personnel
This Royal Decree-Law extends coverage to staff who pay attention in health centres or health-care institutions. It is thus recognised that the benefits to this group, when they have contracted COVID-19, will be considered as a result of an accident at work and, in cases of death, the cause shall also be deemed to be an occupational accident, provided that it occurs within five years of the contagion.
Up to now this type of contingency has been regarded as being of a common nature assimilated from an accident at work for the purpose of temporary incapacity and is now considered to be occupational contingency arising from an accident at work, which means greater coverage for cases where the illness causes permanent incapacity or death for these workers.
In the field of telecommunications, the Council of Ministers has approved the removal of restrictions on users to change operators by retaining their telephone number, which is known as portability, a restriction whose objective, at the beginning of this pandemic, was to help address the health crisis of COVID-19 by limiting the physical movements of both users and telecommunications technicians.
Once the entire national territory is already in Phase 1 or Phase 2, the removal of portability restrictions will enable the telecommunications market to regain its dynamism and full operation while at the same time restoring the ability of citizens to choose the services best suited to their needs.
Once the Royal Decree-Law enters into force, article 20 of Royal Decree-Law 8/2020 of 17 March is repealed and only the extraordinary obligation for operators not to interrupt electronic communications, as essential services, remains until the end of the State of Alarma, even in the case of subscribers who have not made payment. For this reason, the measures adopted today include a procedure that makes it easier for subscribers to meet outstanding invoices in a flexible manner.
At PEREZ DOMINGO-LCS Valencia we are at your disposal to attend to any consultation regarding the current situation, and to the new measures being implemented to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus and to mitigate the effects caused by the pandemic. We will inform you of all of them as soon as we get to know them and analyse them.