Fuel bonus of 200 euros, from beneficiaries to rules for recognition: clarifications on the benefit arrive from the Internal Revenue Service.
Circular No. 27/E of July 14, 2022 explains who is entitled to and how the gasoline bonus, introduced by Decree Law No. 21/2022, works.
It is not a cash contribution, but rather a tax exemption for workers of the value of vouchers recognized by their employer, up to a maximum of 200 euros.
A limit, that of 200 euros, which is in addition to the general limit for corporate welfare measures. The fringe benefit ceiling of 258.23 euros is thus in addition to the threshold provided for the fuel bonus, which is autonomous and additional.
Among the clarifications provided, the Inland Revenue circular specifies that the €200 bonus may be paid in lieu of the performance bonus, but in that case, it will not be possible for the employer to recognize them ad personal and it will be necessary for the payment to be made in execution of company or territorial contracts.
Fuel bonus of 200 euros, who gets it and how does it work? From the Internal Revenue Service, the clarifications
Circular No. 27/E published by the Internal Revenue Agency on July 14, 2022 dwells on the subjective and objective requirements related to the recognition of the 200-euro fuel bonus, a tax break introduced for employees of private employers.
It should be specified that this is not an economic bonus recognized for all workers.
The measure envisaged by Article 2 of Decree-Law No. 21/2022 consists of an allowance in favor of employees on any fuel vouchers recognized by the company, exempt from IRPEF up to the threshold of 200 euros in accordance with the provisions of Article 51, paragraph 3 of the TUIR.
For the company, the value of the vouchers recognized to the employee is among the costs fully deductible from income, according to the provisions of Article 95 of the TUIR, if the disbursement of the same is attributable to the employment relationship and can therefore qualify as “inherent.”
As for the profile of beneficiaries, the Revenue Agency circular points out that employees of private employers are eligible.
In fact, the rule, which initially referred to private companies, was modified in an extensive way during conversion, and therefore applies to employers operating in the private sector, also including individuals who do not carry out a commercial activity and self-employed workers with employees.
Fuel bonus of 200 euros to employees also in lieu of performance bonuses
On the other hand, as far as employees are concerned, no income requirement or limit is set. The rule appears particularly soft in determining the beneficiaries, and as specified by Circular No. 27/E:
“it is considered that the vouchers in question can be paid by the employer right away, in compliance with the conditions and limits provided for by law, even ad persona and without the need for prior contractual agreements, provided that the same are not paid as a replacement for performance bonuses.”
In the latter case, the disbursement of gasoline vouchers will have to take place in the execution of company and territorial agreements and, considering the temporary nature of the rule, limited to 2022, the amounts will necessarily have to be disbursed in the current year.
Fuel bonus of 200 euros, autonomous limit with respect to the value of IRPEF-exempt fringe benefits
The July 14, 2022 Internal Revenue Service circular then goes on to discuss the objective scope and methods of application of the benefit.
One of the first aspects clarified is that the IRPEF exemptions aspects for vouchers related to gasoline, diesel, LPG and methane refueling, but also for recharging electric vehicles, “also in order not to create unjustified unequal treatment between different types of vehicles.”
An important aspect also concerns the relationship between fuel bonus and fringe benefits.
For taxation purposes, the limit of 200 euros is flanked by the limit provided for in Article 51, paragraph 3 of the TUIR of 258.23 euros, to be verified with reference to all the goods and services enjoyed by the employee in the same tax period.
In both cases, the general rule applies that once the exemption threshold is exceeded, the entire value paid contributes to the formation of taxable income and is therefore taxed.
The gasoline bonus of 200 euros, subject to the discipline of Article 51, paragraph 3 of the TUIR, is in any case an additional benefit compared to the general one.
As an example, therefore, if the worker is recognized in the 2022 tax year, gasoline vouchers for 100 euros and other benefits amounting to 300 euros, the latter sum will be fully subject to ordinary taxation.
The Internal Revenue Service points out that if, on the other hand, the value of gasoline vouchers is euro 250 and that of other benefits is euro 200, the entire sum of euro 450 does not contribute to the formation of the employee’s income, since the excess of euro 50 related to gasoline vouchers flows into the still capacious number of other benefits under Article 51, paragraph 3, of the TUIR.
Fuel bonus, IRPEF exemption up to 200 euros only for the year 2022
The relief provided by Decree Law No. 21/2022 is limited to 2022 only.
As specified by the Internal Revenue Service, under the expanded cash principle, sums and values paid by January 12 of the year following the reference year are also considered to be received in the tax period.
The same principle also applies to in-kind disbursements through the allocation of goods or services, and as for benefits disbursed through vouchers, these are received when they become available to the worker.
The tax exemption for vouchers up to 200 euros will therefore apply to allocations made during 2022 and the first 12 days of 2023, “by means of legitimation documents, in paper or electronic format,” but vouchers can also be used by the worker in subsequent periods.
LDP Payroll remains available for any further clarification