Art. 121 of Law Decree dated 19 May 2020, no. 34, turned into Law dated 17 July 2020, no. 77, so-called “Rilancio” Decree, provides for the possibility – with reference to cost incurred in 2020 and 2021 – to benefit from some tax deductions as concerns construction and energy improvement interventions, in the form of tax credit or discounts on considerations, which can be transferred to third parties, including banks and financial intermediaries, departing from the ordinary dispositions on debt transfer.

These measures were introduced by the Government with the aim of relaunching the Italian economic system, which has been heavily affected by the Covid-19 pandemic emergency. Particularly important are the provisions on the transfer of credit generated from works for building renovation, energy efficiency improvement, adoption of aseismic measures, installation of solar power plants and of electric vehicle charging equipment (so-called “110% Superbonus”).

Specifically, besides the possibility to obtain a direct discount on considerations due for works, the abovementioned provision has introduced the possibility to convert tax deductions related to such interventions into tax credit and then to transfer such credit to third parties, including credit institutes and other financial intermediaries. Transferees can, in turn, further transfer credit to other parties, including credit institutes and other financial intermediaries.

The possibility to transfer credit under para. 1 of the article at issue explicitly departs from the current regulation, which, in case of building renovation and energy efficiency improvement works, admits the transfer of credit deriving from the tax deduction or its utilization as a contribution amount. 

Therefore, in order to foster the economic recovery, the Government is focusing on the building industry, which has always been a driver to growth. The legislator has strengthened the impact of the provision, by giving taxpayers the possibility to finance the whole cost incurred, also through some mechanisms for the transfer of the tax credit deriving from deductions, thus having the possibility to obtain loans for works from credit institutions by transferring the tax credit to them, or to obtain by the construction company in charge of the works a discount equal to the whole amount due.

In detail, the regulation provides that credit be transferred without recourse and provides for the non-application of the general offsetting limits provided for tax and social security contribution credit equal to 700,000 Euro (increased to 1 million Euro only for 2020), as well as of the 250,000 Euro limit applicable to tax credit to be indicated in the RU section of the tax return.

Transferees can utilize the acquired tax credit starting from day 10 of the month following the correct receipt of the Revenue Office notification and, in any case, not before 1st January of the year following that in which concerned costs were incurred.

The possibility to transfer tax credit to third parties can also represent a great opportunity for both credit transferees (banks, financial intermediaries, etc.) and transferring parties (taxpayers), who can immediately capitalize their credit without waiting for ordinary five-year payback period.

Moreover, the “SiBonus” platform, made available by Infocamere, is now online, creating a contact between taxpayers that want to transfer their tax credit and entities that are interested in acquiring it. The platform, already operating in North-Eastern Italy, was created thanks to the collaboration with Unioncamere Veneto, and Lorenzo Tagliavanti, president of Infocamere, stated: «In a scenario where middle and large companies have already started to benefit from the transfer of credit, our aim is to make this market more accessible to small enterprises».

Transfer of credit must be made electronically by an intermediary being qualified to electronic submission of returns and must concern the remaining amounts that have not been deducted.  Once the transfer option is exercised, this refers to all remaining non-deducted amounts and is irrevocable. In order for the transfer to be effective, a notification must be submitted to the Revenue Office from 15 October 2020 and by 16 March of the year following that in which the relevant costs are incurred.

In order to benefit from the transfer of credit, it is also necessary to obtain a stamp of approval of information included in the documentation attesting the meeting of the requirements that give right to apply for the Superbonus. Pursuant to art. 35 of legislative decree no. 241/1997, the stamp of approval must be issued by intermediaries qualified for the electronic submission of tax returns, i.e. chartered accountants, accountants, labour consultants, and advisors at CAF offices (tax aid offices).

Therefore, the stamp of approval is necessary in order for the transfer of credit to be successful. Bernoni Grant Thornton can assist the involved parties with this process, in order to ensure that the transfer of credit is concluded effectively. The stamp of approval should be issued with caution, through a structured logic process that allows assessing the adequacy of:

  • the subject that will benefit from the allowance;
  • the type of property concerned by interventions;
  • the type of interventions performed;
  • the relevant cost incurred;
  • the certifications, statements, and self-declarations needed.

At the end of the assessment process, the professional in charge can issue the stamp of approval, attesting the actual right to tax credit.