Speakers at the event included Violeta Ruiz Almendral, a Constitutional Court lawyer, José Suárez, a partner in the Tax practice at Pérez-Llorca, and Diego Marín-Barnuevo, a professor of finance and tax law and an of counsel at the firm. Together, they provided a forum for analysis of the latest decisions on local taxation, as well as the new prospects for action in this area.
The event was presented by José Suárez, who began the session by commenting on the evolution of local taxation and the trend toward the proliferation of regional taxes on traditionally local tax bases. He introduced the central issue of the event, namely the possible need to reconfigure the local taxation model, whose ability to adapt to new times is questionable in some respects, given the latest relevant case law.
After hearing from Suárez, Violeta Ruiz Almendral made several observations regarding the recent doctrine of the Constitutional Court and the effects of its rulings on matters such as the Tax on the Increase in Value of Urban Properties (“Impuesto sobre el Incremento del Valor de los Inmuebles de Naturaleza Urbana”, IIVTNU) and public contributions (“prestaciones patrimoniales públicas de naturaleza no tributaria”). She stressed that this doctrine cannot cover the entire constitutional perspective on the local tax system, nor can it thoroughly consider all scenarios, since issues of unconstitutionality depend on the specific circumstances of the case in which the matter is raised before the court.
José Suárez then spoke again, this time to review the most recent case law from the Constitutional Court and the Supreme Court, as well as matters sub judice before the Supreme Court in relation to municipal taxes. In particular, he explained the current situation of the taxes that have led to the most litigation in recent years, such as the IIVTNU, regional taxes for which incompatibility with local taxes has been alleged, and the property tax in relation to cadastral value.
Diego Marín-Barnuevo considered the legality of the taxes, and the possible grounds for challenging them, from a practical perspective, and gave an informative explanation of public contributions (“prestaciones patrimoniales públicas de naturaleza no tributaria”), which have an uncertain legal regime and which create a legal insecurity that affects both the Public Administration and taxpayers.
The session ended with a discussion in which the attendees raised issues related mainly to the scope of the doctrine of the Constitutional Court, and the possibility of extending it to other types of taxes with problems similar to those brought before this Court in respect of specific taxes.