Under 4.16 of the FAQ of the Federal Ministry of Economics, (in German language only) a note was included that the Bridging Assistance (Corona-Überbrückungshilfe) is limited to a maximum of 90% of uncovered fixed costs. This means that uncovered fixed costs in the context of Bridging Assistance II are the losses that companies report in their profit and loss accounts for the assistance period. For example, if Bridging Assistance is to be applied for the month of October 2020, an accounting loss excluding impairment losses (depreciation) must have been incurred in October 2020. The amount of the maximum payout will be limited to the amount of the loss. The basis for this regulation is the “Federal Regulation Fixed Cost Aid 2020”, which implements the EU Commission’s requirements under state aid law (so-called temporary framework for state aid to support the economy in view of the current outbreak of Covid-19). This regulation is unfortunate in that the restriction to uncovered fixed costs was only included after the fact. It is likely that a large number of applications submitted prior to this change will thus become incorrect and that the amount of Bridging Assistance applied for (and possibly already paid out) will be too high.

The Federal Chamber of Tax Advisors has obtained from the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology that it is not necessary to amend applications submitted before December 5, 2020. The correction can be made as part of the final calculation. This may possibly result in a repayment obligation for the applicant.

Incidentally, the same requirements under state aid law also apply to the November and December aid and presumably to the bridging aid III. According to our information, the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) is currently developing working aids on this subject, which are to be published as soon as possible.

Source: Chamber of Tax Consultants Düsseldorf

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