Construction bonus: the fourth assignment applies only for the future

The art. 29-BIS of the Energy Decree, added during theiter of conversion into law of Legislative Decree no. 17/2022, should give new life to companies operating in the construction sector which would seem to find the possibility of transferring the tax credits due to the various bonuses more easily. Unfortunately, this will not be the case and the provision will not work if no new changes are introduced. The news anticipated by the Minister will not be enough either Franco in response to a parliamentary question that was held in recent days and which will be introduced in yet another decree to be issued soon.

Before the conversion of the Energy Decree

Before of the conversion into law of the Energy decree, it was possible to carry out at most three transfers of credits after the execution of the subsidized works. The forecast affected not only the superbonusbut also the “minor bonuses“Able to attribute tax deductions to a lesser extent. The first sale was “free”, that is, it could be made to any person, any company, even a natural person, even completely unrelated to the building intervention. The second and third assignments could be made exclusively to “supervised” subjects, such as credit institutions, companies belonging to banking groups, financial intermediaries and insurance groups operating in Italy. Before the last legislative change, the credit transfer procedure “stopped” at the third operation.

After the conversion of the Energy Decree

The art. 29-BIS added during the process of converting the decree, it has once again modified art. 121 of Legislative Decree no. 34/2020. The arrangement now allows you to make one fourth assignment with a very specific purpose which, however, as it will be easy to demonstrate, will be entirely thwarted.

From 1 May 2022 “Banks, in relation to the loans for which the number of possible transfers indicated above has been exhausted, is allowed a further assignment exclusively in favor of the subjects with whom they have entered into a current account contract, without the option of a further assignment “.

The purpose of the provision is intuitive.

The legislator intended to concede exclusively to banksbut not to other financial intermediaries and insurance companies, the possibility of “emptying” their inventory of previously purchased credits.

This need arises with reference to time limitations of use of previously purchased credits. In fact, art. 121, paragraph 3, of the Relaunch decree provides that “the tax credits referred to in this article are used in offsetting […], on the basis of the residual installments of deduction not used. The tax credit is used with the same division into annual installments with which the deduction would have been used “.

For example

If a bank purchases a credit from superbonus, the expenses of which were incurred in the year 2021, equal to 100,000 euros, the use of the same in compensation with the taxes owed by the bank, must be carried out in five annual installments equal to 20,000 euros each. If in one year the offsetting were carried out to the extent of 12,000 euros instead of 20,000 euros, the bank would have to carry a deadweight loss equal to the difference of 8,000 euros to the income statement.

So far there is no news whatsoever. In fact, the provision expressly provides that “the unused portion of the tax credit in the year it cannot be used in subsequent yearsand cannot be requested as a refund “.

The banks therefore had to quantify their purchasing capacity based on the taxes to be paid over the next five or ten years depending on the type of credit they intended to purchase. The accuracy of the estimate has assumed particular importance since, if the amount of taxes to be paid had been overestimated, i previously purchased credits they could have turned out excess compared to real needs, with the real risk of attributing large losses to the income statement.

The ability to proceed to fourth assignment now allows banks to intercept account holders who may need to purchase these loans at favorable conditions, using them to offset the taxes due. Banks could, for example, sell loans at a value slightly below the nominal value or by granting more favorable conditions to account holders with reference to the costs of maintaining current accounts.

Fourth sale: will it be effective?

However, it is possible to identify more than one element will limit considerably the main purpose of the rule, that is, the lightening of the “stock of tax credits” charged to banking institutions.

The provision in question expressly provides, in fact, that the possibility of the fourth assignment of credits will be applied to the communications of the first assignment of the credit or of the discount on the invoice sent to the Revenue Agency. starting May 1, 2022.

The forecast means that it will not be possible to carry out the fourth assignment for loans that are already available to the bank as of April 30, 2022.

Therefore, if the bank – as of April 30th – has already purchased credits that can be used for full offsetting of taxes for the next five years, in fact it will not be able to reduce its inventory as it is made up of “old” credits, that is, deriving from the year of options made before May 1, 2022.

Not being able to carry out the assignments of credits purchased in the past, it will not even carry out new purchasesexcept in the case in which the estimates prove to be incorrect and the taxes to be paid, therefore compensable, are actually higher than those estimated.

It would therefore have been necessary to provide for the possibility of carrying out the fourth sale also with reference to the credits already owned, But this did not happen. This is the umpteenth change not able to definitively solve the problem.

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Construction bonus: the fourth assignment applies only for the future

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