What you should know about the Bridging Aid of phase 2
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What you should know about the Bridging Aid of phase 2

We have already informed you about the start of the Bridging Aid Phase 2 in a blog post. The corresponding funding period is between September and December 2020, and we would now like to provide you with further details and explain what you should know about the Bridging Aid of phase 2. In the next few days and weeks we will also inform you about further details and any changes.

Basic requirements (essential points only)

  1. Establishment of the company before 01.11.2019.
  2. Registered office or permanent establishment in Germany
  3. Listed with a German tax office.
  4. Performing the activity as a main occupation (maximum 51% in addition to other activities). No performance as a secondary occupation.
  5. No company in difficulty as of 31.12.2019:

There is no reason to file for insolvency.

Especially:

Half of the paid-up/subscribed share capital must not be consumed by losses (applies only to corporations and partnerships without a natural person with unlimited liability). This does not apply in the first three years after the foundation as well as for small and micro enterprises (less than 50 employees, annual turnover/balance sheet total less than 10 million Euro).

Does not apply if reasons have been eliminated up to the time of application.

Decline in sales (sales are in):

  • April/May 2020 by at least 50 percent compared to April/May 2019, or
  • May/June 2020 by at least 50 percent compared to May/June 2019, or
  • June/July 2020 by at least 50 percent compared to June/July 2019, or
  • July/August 2020 by at least 50 percent compared to July/August 2019, or
  • April-August 2020 by at least 30 percent compared to April-August 2019, or
  • Sales between April and August 2020 is less than 15 percent of the annual sales in 2019.
  • There are specificities for companies established in 2019.

What you should know about the Bridging Aid of phase 2 – the starting position

In principle, the decisive factor in each case is the structure of the companies on March 1, 2020.

Application

Applications can be submitted only and exclusively online via the official online portal by an examining third party (tax consultant, auditor and lawyer).

Applications can be submitted until December 31, 2020.

Amount of the subsidy

  • In the case of Bridging Aid in phase 2, fixed costs will be subsidised for the months of September, October, November and December 2020. The amount of the subsidy is based on the planned decline in sales in the respective funding months compared with the same months of the previous year.
  • 90 percent of eligible fixed costs in the event of a decline in sales > 70 percent
  • 60 percent of eligible fixed costs in the event of a decline in sales ≥ 50 percent and ≤ 70 percent
  • 40 percent of eligible fixed costs in the event of a decline in sales ≥ 30 percent and < 50 percent
  • Companies can apply for a maximum of 50,000 euros in Bridging Aid for each funding month. The maximum funding amount is therefore 200,000 euros.

Eligible fixed costs

Eligible costs are continuous fixed operating costs which are incurred during the period of eligibility, are contractually established or fixed by public authorities and cannot be modified unilaterally.

Only those fixed costs whose contractual due date falls within the eligibility period (including contractually agreed advance payments) are eligible. Only the date on which the invoice is issued for the first time is decisive for the contractual due date. The time of further requests for payment, the time of payment or the time of accounting are not relevant. Operating costs may only be recognised once in each case (not under two digits simultaneously).

All fixed operating costs are only eligible if they were established under private law or by public authorities before September 1, 2020, unless otherwise stated. In the case of costs for the necessary maintenance, servicing or storage of assets, the deadline is deemed to have been met if the asset was part of the applicant’s assets on September 1, 2020.

Deferred costs which have previously been claimed under other grant programmes (e.g. emergency or Bridging Aid of phase 1) and are now due for payment during the eligibility period are not eligible (no double funding).

Contract adjustments made after September 1, 2020, which lead to an increase in costs during the eligibility period or to a deferral of costs into the eligibility period, will not be taken into account. Conversely, fixed operating costs will also be taken into account in principle if they were justified before September 1, 2020, but measures to reduce costs in the funding period lead to a contractual adjustment after September 1, 2020 (e.g. a change of telephone provider or a move to a cheaper office).

Fixed costs

  1. rents and leases
  2. other rental costs (e.g. for movable property)
  3. interest expenses for operating loans
  4. share of financing costs for leasing rates
  5. expenditure on necessary maintenance, servicing or storage of fixed assets and rented or leased assets, including IT
  6. expenditure on electricity, water, heating, cleaning and hygiene measures
  7. property taxes
  8. Operation licence fees
  9. insurance, subscriptions and other fixed expenses (e.g. telecommunications costs, vehicle taxes, costs of external service providers such as accounting, office cleaning costs, membership fees, account management fees, franchise fees)
  10. costs for third parties examining the application for Corona Bridging Aid (2nd phase)
  11. personnel expenses [Note: Personnel expenses are taken into account at a flat rate of 20 percent of the fixed costs in Nos. 1 to 10 of this table].
  12. costs for trainees
  13. lost commissions/margins with travel agencies/tour operators

Costs for the examining third party

The costs incurred are reimbursed at a rate of 40 to 90 percent depending on the decline in sales.

What you should know about the Bridging Aid of phase 2 – the final account

As the application is mainly based on forecasted sales as well as costs, a final statement of account has to be prepared, as for the Bridging Aid of phase 1.

The final account, like the application, is made through the third party auditor. At the end of the eligibility period on December 31, 2020, and no later than December 31, 2021, the verifying third party shall submit the final financial statement on behalf of the applicant.

Repayment of the Bridging Aid must be made if the subsidies already paid exceed the final eligibility.

An additional payment to the Bridging Aid will be made for the 2nd phase of the Bridging Aid on request if the final entitlement exceeds the subsidies already paid.

If no final settlement is made, the Corona Bridging Aid must be repaid in full.

What you should know about the Bridging Aid of phase 2 – Need for change

If an application has been submitted but not decided, it is possible to withdraw the application using the electronic application procedure. The application must then be resubmitted within the application period (by December 31, 2020 at the latest).

The fixed costs effectively incurred and the actual decline in sales are confirmed in the final accounts (see 3.11). In this way, it will also be possible to add any additional eligible costs or other information that is likely to lead to a subsequent payment.

Subsidy fraud

In the case of deliberately or carelessly false or incomplete information as well as deliberately or carelessly omitting to notify changes in this information, the applicants must expect criminal prosecution for subsidy fraud (§ 264 StGB) and possibly further legal consequences.

In this case, there is no exemption from punishment. If a false application has been made, the offence of subsidy fraud may already have been committed. A possible „voluntary“ repayment of the subsidy does not make it exempt from criminal liability, but it can be taken into account as a mitigating measure.

Private cost of living

Costs of private living such as rent or interest payments for a private flat (with the exception of [pro rata] costs for a study, if this has already been claimed for tax purposes in 2019), health insurance contributions and contributions to private pension schemes are not covered by the Bridging Aid.

If necessary, individual federal states will again set up supplementary programmes for this purpose. In North Rhine-Westphalia, an expansion of the NRW-Bridging Aid plus is planned.

Information event

We are planning an e-information event on this topic for Tuesday, November 10, 2020 (16.30 to 17.00 hrs). In this event, we want to discuss the requirements once again. We would also like to explain to you how we proceed with the application procedure.

Our concrete help for you

We submit the applications not only for our existing clients but also for all other interested companies. Because as with the Bridging Aid of phase 1, the same applies now: Only tax consultants, auditors or lawyers can submit applications.

Do you have any questions? Would you like to make an application? Please do not hesitate to contact us.

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Lars Rinkewitz
Lars Rinkewitz
Tel.: +49 211-90 86 70
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