The recently changed tax landscape for company cars is causing more and more business owners to make the transition to an electric fleet. However, this transition is not limited to the process of choosing the appropriate cars.
Charging electric cars also involves a number of choices and investments. In this article, we provide the answers to 4 common charging infrastructure questions.
1 What tax incentive can I enjoy as a company when investing in charging infrastructure?
Partnerships and sole proprietors can still enjoy an increased cost deduction of 150% for the investment in a publicly accessible charging station until August 31, 2024.
In doing so, the investment must cumulatively meet the following conditions:
- It must be a fixed charging station obtained or established in new condition.
- They must be investments that are linear over at least five taxable eras is depreciated (so possible depreciation over 10 years is not a problem here).
- The charging station must be located during normal business hours, or business closing hours be freely accessible to third parties.
- The investment should be made in a intelligent charging station. This means that the charging point must be digitally linked to a management system capable of controlling the charging time and power of the charging station.
- The charging station must be operational a public access by Aug. 31, 2024.
If all conditions are met, the increased cost deduction can be enjoyed for the investment in the charging station, as well as associated costs including study, placement and connection costs. The costs related to the purchase and installation of an electricity cabin required for the operation of the charging stations are also eligible.
2 What concerns are there when reimbursing home charging fees to my employees?
As with the allocation of a fuel card, the allocation of a charge card and the reimbursement of home charging costs does not involve any additional benefit in kind.
However, with regard to the reimbursement of home charging costs, this exemption only applies if the electricity reimbursed was purchased by the employee by means of a "smart" charging station or cable. That is, the charging infrastructure must have a communication system from which the amount of electricity consumed during each charging session can be deduced. The employer can then reimburse this consumption at the current electricity price.
Reimbursement of the loading charges can then be made through the preparation of an expense report by the employee, or through split-billing.
Split-billing allows charging costs for charging the company car at home to be billed directly to the company. The employee can effortlessly and transparently pass on the cost to his employer through the intervention of a third party. This third party takes care of the entire process of tracking, billing and reimbursing the charging costs to the employees, ensuring an efficient and automated handling of the reimbursement process.
3 What happens to the home charging station upon termination of the employment contract?
As an employer, you have the option of granting your employees a charging station. However, this raises the question of what happens to this charging station when the employment contract is terminated.
Upon the departure of an employee to whom a charging post was awarded, there are several options.
The charging station becomes the property of the employee free of charge
In this scenario, the employer stipulates that upon termination of the employment contract, for whatever reason, the home charging station and accessories, become the property of the employee at no cost.
However, the employee will then still owe social contributions and withholding taxes on the market-based (residual) book value of the charge point.
The charging station should be taken over by the employee for a pre-agreed price.
Here, the employer stipulates that upon termination of the employment contract, for whatever reason, the employee will be able to take over the home charging station and accessories, which are the property of the employer, for a fixed amount.
The charging station will be taken back by the employer.
The employer hereby stipulates that upon termination of the employment contract, for whatever reason, the employer will take back the home charging station and accessories, which are the property of the employer. Here, the employer has the option to charge the employer, or the employee, for the costs involved in taking back the charging station. In practice, a combination of the first and second methods is often used, with the employee owing compensation on departure in the amount of the accounting residual value of the charging station. If the charging station no longer has an accounting residual value at the time of the employee's departure, the charging station will pass to the employee at no cost.
Here, as an employer, you should always keep in mind that the charging infrastructure should be depreciated fiscally and accounting minimum at 5 years.
The redemption amount owed by the employee should be established in the car policy in advance.
4 How does the cost of a charging session compare to the cost of a refueling session?
Compared to the cost of fueling a gasoline or diesel car, the cost of charging an electric car can vary even more widely. Here, charging at the company site and charging at home will always be the cheapest options. When the car is charged at a public charging station, the cost can be as much as double (AC slow charging) or triple (DC fast charging).
|Home or business charging
|Public charging (AC)
|Public fast charging (DC)
|Average energy cost
|6.3 l/ 100 km
|16.3 kWh/ 100 km
|16.3 kWh/ 100 km
|16.3 kWh/ 100 km
|Energy cost over 10,000 km
To date, employers often grant unlimited fuel cards to employees who have been provided with a fuel car. Since the charging costs for electric cars are a lot less predictable than the fuel costs for a fuel car, when granting a charging card to employees with an electric car it is always advisable to make clear agreements about the "charging etiquette". One way to avoid extremely high charging costs is to allocate a fixed budget per employee, which can be spent by the employee on charging at the company site, at home or publicly.
Furthermore, the employer also has the possibility to provide a customized charging policy, in which the charging solutions offered and the modalities per charging solution can be anchored. For example, it can be stipulated that the employee can charge unlimitedly on the company site and at home, and additionally be allocated a limited budget to charge the car exceptionally at a public charging point in case of emergency.
Is your car policy in need of an electrification update, or do you have questions regarding the transition of your fleet?
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