|Belgian Royal Family to start paying taxes. Image credit: Almanach de Gotha|
Finally, Belgium’s royals will have to pay taxes. Since the kingdom was granted independence in 1830, not a single member of the royal family has contributed a cent to the state coffers. Now, that is going to change.
The coalition government has already approved the reform.
Expactica.com reports His Majesty, however, receives an annual tax-free allowance of 11.5 million euros ($15 million). This exemption has been possible because the constitution any rules for the reigning royal to be altered.
However, the other members of the king’s family will be hard-hit by this household reforms, including his children and his sister-in-law, Queen Fabiola.
Crown Prince Philippe, who receives receives around 923,000 euros a year, will have to adjust to a reduced circumstances. Under the new law, he will only receive a gross salary of 180,000 euros. And that could dwindle further after tax. However, any amount paid for staff and meeting household expenses in relation to their job as working royals shall be tax exempt, although the government will still keep a scrutinizing look at their accounts.
The king’s younger children, Princess Astrid and PrinceLaurent, will each receive a gross salary 90,000 euros.
Meanwhile, the king’s frail and wheelchair-bound sister-in-law, Queen Fabiola, window of King Baudoin, saw her annual stipend slashed from 1.4 million euros to 923,000 euros.
The dowager queen was criticized lately after she decided to set up a private foundation that will take charge in disbursing her estate to her nephews and for Catholic charities upon her death. However, critics were quick to point out that the foundation is actually intended to funnel the funds to her Spanish relatives so she could avoid paying 70 percent death duties currently implemented in Belgium.
The recent rules however provided that the surviving spouse of a sovereign will only receive an amount equal to two-thirds of what an heir to the throne receives for 10 years. Afterwards, the amount will be slashed to just half of it.
In the future, the government will only pay for the allowance of the heir to the throne.
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