Barcelona’s difficult financial situation has taken another turn for the worse after the club were ordered to pay €22.7 million.
The Catalans must pay the huge sum after it was ruled they incorrectly paid tax on player agent fees between 2012 and 2015.
Barcelona did appeal the ruling, which was originally handed down in 2020, but it’s now been announced that Spain’s National Court has upheld the financial penalty.
Barcelona have said the decision “comes as a surprise” in a statement confirming they will appeal to the Supreme Court.
“Fútbol Club Barcelona has been informed of the verdict on income tax (IRPF) of the National Court (Audiencia Nacional) regarding the appeal presented by the club with respect to the tax inspection concerning payments made to players’ agents between 2012 and 2015. Fútbol Club Barcelona shall be presenting an appeal to the Supreme Court (Tribunal Supremo).
“It comes as a surprise that the Contentious-Administrative house at the National Court has not considered the most recent jurisprudence of the Supreme Court on this matter, from which certain other football clubs have been able to benefit in recent sentences on the same matter.
“The divergent criteria of the National Court is also surprising when, a few months ago, another section accepted an appeal from our club on an identical issue to the current one that derived from the same inspection in relation to the Non-Resident Income Tax.
“This ruling does not entail any payment obligation for the club at present, this contingency being properly provisioned in the annual accounts.”Barca have
The matter relates to the remuneration received by agents, with Barcelona being penalised for tax simulation
According to The Athletic, the court ruling defined tax simulation as “the use of artifices directed towards tax avoidance, to enjoy fiscal benefits that do not correspond to the actual transition carried out.”
It was also ruled that “the relationship between Barcelona and the agents only serves to cover the payments made by the club to the players. This assessment is shared by the Chamber (of the National Court).
“The club appears to be paying the agent for services that do not exist. When in reality it is paying part of the player’s remuneration in this way for the services they provide to the club, with the corresponding tax implications, which affect the IS (corporation tax), VAT and IRPF (personal income tax), distorting the taxable base for these tax concepts.”
Barca were pretty swift with their response and are clearly unhappy with the ruling. It’s the latest economic problem to hit the Catalan giants, with the club still heavily in debt and struggling to comply with current Financial Fair Play rules.