Your work and benefits
The maternity leave for fathers will be gradually increased from 10 to 20 days. This applies to all types of employees, including interim and short-term contracts.
The federal states will be given the option of turning their public holiday into a paid public holiday. For Flanders this is 11 July.
People with disabilities are less likely to lose their benefits if they start living together. In addition, the lowest benefits are raised ‘towards’ the poverty line.
The government is planning a series of labor market reforms. These relate to a flexible work organization, the conversion of part of the severance payments into a training budget, and the facilitation of the combination of work and benefits. There will also be an ‘individual training account’, which someone can use throughout his career. It is the intention that every full-time employee is entitled to an average of five training days per year.
To make it easier to combine work and family, the tax credit for childcare will be expanded. Today, for a child up to 12 years old (18 years for children with a severe disability), you can tax up to 11.20 euros per day in childcare costs. This concerns the costs of childcare for the day-care center, a childminder, before and after-school care and a summer camp with the youth movement. The tax reduction still depends on the parents’ income and amounts to at least 45 percent.
Young adults who have a job and still live with their parents can take charge of their parents for tax purposes. There may also be a tax benefit for resident grandparents, brothers and sisters. This takes the form of a surcharge on top of the tax-free allowance, so that a larger part of the income escapes tax. This allowance is increased for (grand) parents and dependent brothers and sisters over 65 years of age.
There will be no capital gains tax or a new securities tax. However, the government will ‘strive for a fair contribution from those persons who have the greatest ability to contribute, with respect for entrepreneurship’.
The tax regularization, with which illegal money can be whitewashed after paying a tax, will end on December 31, 2023.
The minimum pension is gradually increased to EUR 1,500 net. That will only be for those who have a full career of 45 years. Those who fail to do so will receive a minimum pension that is proportional to the number of career years. Anyone who has 30 career years is entitled to at least 1,000 euros.
The pension bonus is reintroduced. As a result, employees, the self-employed and civil servants who work longer will accrue more pension rights. From the moment you meet the conditions for early retirement, you start to accrue the pension bonus.
Self-employed people will accrue more pension rights. The correction coefficient, which is used to calculate the pension, disappears. As a result, the self-employed will accrue a pension in the same way as employees.
Supplementary pension and retirement savings
It remains an objective to further generalize the supplementary pension through the employer – the second pension pillar. In a first step, harmonization between blue-collar and white-collar workers must be brought to a successful conclusion. At the same time, the social partners are invited to consider how each employee can be covered as quickly as possible by a supplementary pension plan that includes a contribution of at least 3 percent of the gross salary.
The costs (entry costs, management costs, …) that financial institutions charge for the supplementary pension and individual pension savings (the third pension pillar) are identified, analyzed and, if necessary, measures are taken.
There will be a driver’s license with points for those who have repeatedly committed serious traffic offenses.
All new company cars must be emission-free by 2026.
The mobility budget gives employees with a company car the option to exchange it for sustainable transport alternatives. The government will develop a framework whereby employees who are not entitled to a company car can also receive a mobility budget from their employer. This should encourage sustainable mobility (public transport, bicycles, environmentally friendly cars,…) and living close to work.
There is no plan to abolish cash money, but the government wants to ‘drastically reduce the number of cash-paid transactions by the end of the legislature’. The ceilings for contactless payments will be further expanded.
It must become easier to compare financial products. The government must develop online rate simulators and comparison modules for the main banking and insurance products.
It will investigate with the banks how the bank costs associated with a mortgage loan and for the refinancing of a home loan can be reduced.
Existing legislation on dormant accounts is being evaluated and an extension to retirement savings accounts is being explored.
Finally, it must become easier for the chronically ill to take out health insurance at acceptable premiums. The ‘right to be forgotten’ is being improved and an extension of the list of chronic diseases is being explored.
In order to keep the energy bill for households and businesses under control, the government will see to it that the federal portion of the electricity bill falls.
Your real estate
It is being investigated whether social and fiscal regulations are still in line with modern forms of society, such as cohousing and kangaroo living.
VAT on demolition and reconstruction
The VAT rate on demolition and renovation will be 6 percent everywhere. Until now, the reduced VAT rate only applies in 32 Belgian cities and municipalities. Elsewhere, you have to pay the usual VAT rate of 21 percent.
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