On May 20, 2015, the Conseil d'Etat decided in favor of the
taxpayer in a situation in which the FTA argued that the taxpayer
had committed a so-called "abnormal act of management" by
not charging more administrative fees to its clients.
The taxpayer, which was providing certain ground services to its
clients within an airport, was charging, inter alia, administrative
fees to them, for amounts ranging from 0 percent to 15 percent of
the underlying service fees. The FTA was of the view that the
taxpayer should have charged 15 percent across the board.
The Conseil d'Etat took the view that the invoicing of the
administrative fees, including discounts applied to certain
clients, was a basic management decision that may not be, as such,
challenged by the FTA. For example, the taxpayer may decide to
charge lower administrative fees to clients, generating a higher
turnover, without being validly challenged by the FTA.
Accordingly, any challenge by the FTA should have been based on the
evidence that such a management decision (including discounts
applied to certain clients) was against the taxpayer's
interest; since the FTA was not able to provide any such evidence,
the Conseil d'Etat dismissed the challenge.
The decision is a good indication that, other than under
exceptional circumstances, the FTA is not supposed to meddle in the
daily business decisions of taxpayers.
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