Since this year, the tax on wealth (ISF) has disappeared, replaced by the tax on the real estate asset (IFIS), aimed at the real estate property. The question frequently discussed, whether it would be, or is not, legitimate to subject works of art to the ISF will therefore be more. “However, it is wrong to imagine, as some do, that works of art are exempt from all taxation. In reality, their life is punctuated by multiple taxes,” stresses master Francis Briest, president of the supervisory board of Artcurial. Here are the details.

At the time of purchase, if you import an object of art from a country outside of the european Union (EU), you must pay VAT at the reduced rate of 5.5%. For the time being. Indeed, it would be question of raising to 20% the tax on the import of cultural goods. On the other hand, there is no export tax. An enhancing measure, admittedly, the interest of foreign buyers, but not the conservation of the national heritage.

A resale, several cases may present themselves. If the value of a work or of an object does not exceed eur 5 000, no tax is due. It’s the same if the object is owned for more than twenty-two years.

If you decide to sell within that period of a part whose value exceeds the bar of the 5 000 euros, two solutions are available to you. Either pay a flat rate of 6.5% on the sale price obtained. Either pay a tax on the capital gain. It amounted to 34.6% at the end of a year of ownership, but is lower then 5% per year after twenty-four months of ownership. In practice, a calculation should be done in order to retain the most favourable solution to the seller. Choose to pay the tax on capital gains requires to have retained the invoice evidencing the date of purchase. Failing that, the solution of the flat-rate fee is required.

this is added a VAT of 4% included in the costs of the auction, variable costs ranging from 20% to 25% on average.

more surprising, the tax on capital gains also applies to the export, without resale, if you transfer a property abroad, outside the EU.

in The particular case of the succession

as part of an estate, works of art may enter into the fee of 5% of the total amount of assets, securities and real estate, if they are the equivalent of the furniture (for the use and ornament of apartments). “Provided that they are not gathered in a collection. In the latter case – or their value is less than 5% of the other assets, they shall be the subject of an inventory of the estate, prepared by an appraiser, a notary or a bailiff, and then will be taxed on the same basis as other assets,” explains Pierre Taugourdeau, legal director of the Council of voluntary sales.

special Case : a total exemption from taxes to resale applies where the buyer is a museum, an archive or institution. Let us mention, finally, a provision reserved exclusively for businesses. In order to promote the patronage, the purchase of a work by a living artist results in a tax deduction, provided, however, expose the work in question during the five years. The same regulation applies to the acquisition of a play considered as a national treasure, and therefore prohibited export.

Zoom: a work of art for tax purposes

to meet the tax definition of the work of art, a creation must have been made entirely from the hand of the artist. This is the case of paintings, paintings, drawings, ceramics, etc. engravings, prints, lithographs, photographs, sculptures, tapestries, enamels on copper…, should have been edited or created in a limited number.

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these original works come particularly add books and manuscripts, antiquities over one hundred years of age, the specimens of zoology, botany, mineralogy… and ancient coins, as well as the automotive collection.

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