Apple must fight $15.3B EU tax bill without US government help, court says

Posted:
in General Discussion edited May 2018
On Thursday, the European Union Court of Justice blocked U.S. efforts to side with Apple in the appeal of a $15.3 billion tax bill, which the European Commission first ordered Ireland to collect in August 2016.


Court of Justice of the European Union


The Court of Justice upheld a lower-court decision in December 2017, which said the U.S. had failed to show how it had a direct interest in the matter, Bloomberg reported. The latest ruling was announced via Twitter.

The U.S. government argued it does have a vested interest in Apple's EU tax struggles, as the company could potentially claim tax credits for paying money in Ireland. The Treasury has even claimed that the EU is making itself a "supra-national tax authority."

The EU however has said that Ireland extended preferential tax treatment to Apple for years, even reverse-engineering rules on the fly to make the company happy. Under the Union's laws, benefits offered to one company must be available to others -- otherwise, it can constitute illegal state aid.

Apple has funneled large sums of international revenue through Ireland, using loopholes to pay minimal taxes. According to the Commission, Apple paid 1 percent on profits in 2003, and as little as 0.005 percent in 2014.

In testimony and elsewhere Apple and Ireland have denied any wrongdoing, claiming they followed all applicable laws. Nevertheless the latter has begun closing some loopholes, and the Commission has proposed new tax rules that would spread Apple's payments around the EU.

Some critics have accused Apple of violating the spirit of the law, and/or depriving social services of badly-needed revenue.

Regardless, Apple's first payments into an escrow fund should start this month. A ruling on the appeal could happen as soon as this fall.

«134

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 65
    racerhomie3racerhomie3 Posts: 1,057member
    The EU leeches are at it again.They are destroying Europe little by little.
    SpamSandwichmacseekerbshanktallest skilelijahggeorgie01anton zuykov
  • Reply 2 of 65
    nunzynunzy Posts: 662member
    It is good to see the US Government stepping in to help corporations to keep their offshore profits. Exxon could use help with paying less tax too.
  • Reply 3 of 65
    KuyangkohKuyangkoh Posts: 313member
    EU what?? Apple is simply following your tax laws. What a bunch of rip off.
    when war comes to your door, America should be charging them for any help and protection...i will call it “protection revenue enhancement” not taxes 
    mwhitepatchythepiratemacseekerbshanktallest skilelijahgracerhomie3
  • Reply 4 of 65
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 30,994member
    The US could always stop paying into the WTO. That'd end some of this nonsense. 

    2015 contribution amounts:  https://www.wto.org/english/thewto_e/secre_e/contrib_e.htm
    bshanktallest skilracerhomie3
  • Reply 5 of 65
    steven n.steven n. Posts: 1,112member
    The EU needs to exhort and make up laws and apply them expo-facto style to pay for their nearly backrupt social programs. With the exception of Germany, almost every country in the Union is on the brink of failure.
    tallest skilelijahg
  • Reply 6 of 65
    The EU leeches are at it again.They are destroying Europe little by little.
     Nonsense. 
    muthuk_vanalingamelijahgspice-boy
  • Reply 7 of 65
    Dear EU,

    Fuck you. And don’t ask for our money from our taxpayers,  in case if war come to your door. 

    Sincerely,
    The Citizens of the United States of America
    elijahgtallest skilbshank
  • Reply 8 of 65
    elijahgelijahg Posts: 877member
    The EU's already deeply unpopular, and yet they snub their and other country's citizens again, and again, and again ad nauseam. 
    edited May 2018 tallest skilbshank
  • Reply 9 of 65
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    Fuck you. And don’t ask for our money from our taxpayers,  in case if war come to your door. 
    We give them something like $12,000,000 in tax dollars every year. That’s not including us paying 100% of NATO’s budget (which shouldn’t exist).
  • Reply 10 of 65
    elijahgelijahg Posts: 877member
    tallest skil said:

    That’s not including us paying 100% of NATO’s budget (which shouldn’t exist).
    That's complete rubbish, the US pays about 22%.  There are plenty that pay barely anything though, and that's wrong. Especially the Eastern European states who benefit from NATO's protection from Putin.
    tallest skil
  • Reply 11 of 65
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    elijahg said:
    That's complete rubbish, the US pays about 22%.  There are plenty that pay barely anything though, and that's wrong. Especially the Eastern European states who benefit from NATO's protection from Putin.
    Thanks, I’d mistaken it for something else. The takeaway is the following line: In fact, only five of the 28 NATO allies have made the grade. The US picks up all that shortfall.
    bshankSpamSandwichelijahganton zuykov
  • Reply 12 of 65
    analogjackanalogjack Posts: 1,066member
    Eeyeeewww
  • Reply 13 of 65
    elijahg said:
    That's complete rubbish, the US pays about 22%.  There are plenty that pay barely anything though, and that's wrong. Especially the Eastern European states who benefit from NATO's protection from Putin.
    Thanks, I’d mistaken it for something else. The takeaway is the following line: In fact, only five of the 28 NATO allies have made the grade. The US picks up all that shortfall.
    Ever wonder why the US is willing to pay more than their fair share? Who's supplying all of these smaller Nato alliance countries with the "defence" systems that they apparently "need" against the big bad ruskies or the evil chinese that we keep hearing about in MSM. I'd like to see Trump go all out with America-First and stop all overseas funding and start a trade-war, then see how things pan out. 
    Russia has always been in an arms-race with the US and will continue to be until both countries see sense (or one runs out of money). China on the other hand does not have the same goals that the US (and previously Great Britain) has - China historically built a wall to keep the mongolians OUT, they didn't invade and conquer them, it's a totally different view on life.
  • Reply 14 of 65
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member
    China historically built a wall to keep the mongolians OUT, they didn't invade and conquer them, it's a totally different view on life.

    Why did China just complete sea trials with their first domestically produced aircraft carrier then? That is a power projection platform, not a defensive one.

    Re: the EU excluding the US government from arguing within their court system, that is their right (if they think it's consistent with the law over there) but realistically they can't prevent the US taking punitive measures elsewhere (such as next time a trade deal comes up). It seems short sighted of them to go after one big cash grab at the cost of annoying the US in the long run. The US has a long memory.
    bshankelijahg
  • Reply 15 of 65
    viclauyycviclauyyc Posts: 347member
    ascii said:
    China historically built a wall to keep the mongolians OUT, they didn't invade and conquer them, it's a totally different view on life.

    Why did China just complete sea trials with their first domestically produced aircraft carrier then? That is a power projection platform, not a defensive one.

    So only US can own aircraft carrier? What kind of retard thinking is it?

    if US want to be the boss of the world and the world police, maybe US should willing to pay without being a pussy complaining.
    singularity
  • Reply 16 of 65
    joogabahjoogabah Posts: 117member
    steven n. said:
    The EU needs to exhort and make up laws and apply them expo-facto style to pay for their nearly backrupt social programs. With the exception of Germany, almost every country in the Union is on the brink of failure.
    Does that fill you with glee?  The prospect of the gutting of social programs?   I know they offend some people ideologically.  What is it about capitalism that makes some people revel in the misery of the “losers”?
    singularityelijahgspice-boy
  • Reply 17 of 65
    bshankbshank Posts: 161member
    joogabah said:
    steven n. said:
    The EU needs to exhort and make up laws and apply them expo-facto style to pay for their nearly backrupt social programs. With the exception of Germany, almost every country in the Union is on the brink of failure.
    Does that fill you with glee?  The prospect of the gutting of social programs?   I know they offend some people ideologically.  What is it about capitalism that makes some people revel in the misery of the “losers”?
    I work in human services. I’m fine be with social programs. The Ex post facto nature of these laws is what is disturbing. If you can’t pay for your social programs it doesn’t mean it’s ok to dig into US corporations pockets as a creative solution to your financial problems and try to impose your newfound values that corporations should be responsible for paying for social programs on everybody else. Not only does this flout ongoing talks about tax reform in a global economy, it transgresses ongoing talks unilaterally by imposing tax laws ahead of what global leaders will end up agreeing on. (I am not a Trumpeteer, btw)
    elijahg
  • Reply 18 of 65
    croprcropr Posts: 924member
    bshank said:
    joogabah said:
    steven n. said:
    The EU needs to exhort and make up laws and apply them expo-facto style to pay for their nearly backrupt social programs. With the exception of Germany, almost every country in the Union is on the brink of failure.
    Does that fill you with glee?  The prospect of the gutting of social programs?   I know they offend some people ideologically.  What is it about capitalism that makes some people revel in the misery of the “losers”?
    I work in human services. I’m fine be with social programs. The Ex post facto nature of these laws is what is disturbing. If you can’t pay for your social programs it doesn’t mean it’s ok to dig into US corporations pockets as a creative solution to your financial problems and try to impose your newfound values that corporations should be responsible for paying for social programs on everybody else. Not only does this flout ongoing talks about tax reform in a global economy, it transgresses ongoing talks unilaterally by imposing tax laws ahead of what global leaders will end up agreeing on. (I am not a Trumpeteer, btw)
    Well actually the laws are not ex post facto.  The law in question has been there since the Maastricht treaty in 1992 and has not changed: "Member states are not allowed to create special tax rules applicable to a selective group of companies, as this is considered as illegal state aid.  The illegal state aid has to be paid back to the member state."

    Apple has paid less than 1% on its profits while the normal tax rate in Ireland is 12.5%. The EU commission perceives that as illegal state aid from Ireland to Apple and as such it must be paid back (to Ireland).  Whether you like it or not, the EU commission has a pretty strong case.  No one can easily explain the difference between 12,5% and the effective rate Apple has paid. 

    The existing loopholes that are being closed only have a limited role in this.  Loopholes mainly lower the income susceptible to tax, but not the tax rate itself. 

    The financing of social programs is totally irrelevant.  The EU does not see a single Euro from the money that has to be paid back. All has to go to Ireland.

    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 19 of 65
    crowleycrowley Posts: 5,799member
    Demand for waah-mbulances is off the charts in this thread.  The EU are doing everything right so far.
    singularity
  • Reply 20 of 65
    xbitxbit Posts: 231member
    If Apple wants to do business in the EU, it has to play by EU rules. Ireland acted unlawfully and so Apple has to pay the tax it owes. I don't see where all of the resentment on here is coming from.

    This is far less egregious than Apple bending over backwards to keep Chinese authorities happy.
    muthuk_vanalingam
Sign In or Register to comment.