The Upcoming ATAD 3 Substance Rules: Overview and First Challenges

With the issuance of the third draft Anti-Tax Avoidance Directive, the European Commission continues its path in developing a grid of measures aimed at fighting tax evasion and avoidance at a European level. These new measures focus more specifically on entities lacking substance to prevent them from being entitled to improper tax benefits. However, the authors note that the first release of this set of rules is also lacking in precision regarding key concepts that are prerequisite to understand the exact scope of the entities targeted but also the tax consequences that would apply to entities falling within such scope. In this article, the authors provide an overview of the envisaged rules as currently drafted, together with a first set of practical challenges that could derive form their interpretation.