It was the year of the casual hire. Let’s have clarity once and for all


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rentalAfter the classic Italian-style delays, we can finally say this year that casual hiring has really come into operation. So many of you have written to us telling us that you have taken advantage of it in order to perhaps maintain your boat. As many of you have submitted questions to us about the regulations, which are not always clear. We do so by taking up the vademcum produced by dial our consultant, experienced Yachting Lawyer Antonello Meloni (for more info,

Who can practice casual hiring?
The “holder who is a natural person,” the “companies not having rental or lease as their business purpose,” or the “user by way of leasing.” The wording “natural person owner” has created significant interpretation problems, as it is legally equivocal; the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport, in a specific note clarified that the natural person owner is identified with the owner-operator of the recreational boat or vessel. In fact, the casual hire contract establishes a direct relationship between the owner-owner and the customer transported, while subsequent use by a third party would rather seem to take on the connotation of a sub-hire, cases not covered by the rule under consideration and which would imply, in any case, the exercise of an activity of a commercial nature. Art. 23 of Law no. 98/2013 finally introduced the possibility of exercise also for companies not having rental or leasing as their corporate purpose, thus extending the range of those entitled to exercise to such of companies as well.

Are special qualifications required for the operation of units used for occasional hire?
It should be premised that the only recreational craft on which casual chartering can be exercised are boats and ships; watercraft are excluded. The command and conduct of the pleasure craft may be assumed with the requirement of possessing a boat license. Professional title is required if occasional chartering is done on recreational vessels. These qualifications are required both when the conducting is the responsibility of the shipowner and when the shipowner makes use of the labor services of other personnel, which are included among the incidental casual services.

What are the requirements to be able to exercise?

The exercise of chartering is subject to communication, to be made by telematic means, to theInland Revenue Agency and the territorially competent Port Authority, as well as to Inps and Inail, in the case of employing additional personnel, namely: the template to be sent to the IRS, in addition to providing a wider choice of electronic formats (pdf, gif, tff or jpg), should be attached to an e-mail message to be forwarded to the box of the central assessment directorate of the Internal Revenue Service:; for communications to the Harbour Master’s Offices, the decree stipulates that obligated parties must fill out and sign the template in pdf format that is available on the website of the Harbour Master’s Offices and send it by e-mail to the relevant Harbour Master’s Office; in the event that the occasional hire results in ancillary work, the communication must also be sent to Inps and Inail according to the rules already in use for prior communications for the start of occasional ancillary work activities. Notifications must be made prior to the start of each occasional rental activity. A copy of the notice, accompanied by receipts of successful transmissions to the Internal Revenue Service and the Coast Guard (and if applicable Inps and Inail), as well as a copy of the occasional charter contract, should be kept on board the pleasure craft.

Operating limits and tax issues?
The first draft legislation stipulated that income from rental activities was subject, at the request of the recipient, “if the amount does not exceed 30,000 euros annually,” to a substitute tax at the rate of 20 percent. The 30,000.00 euro limit was repealed by Art. 23 L. 98/2013, which stipulated a limit of 42 total annual days. What happens if the 42-day limit is exceeded? In that case, you lose the opportunity to take advantage of the 20 percent substitute tax.
This interpretation was also supported by the position taken by the Internal Revenue Service, which considered the 42-day annual limit not as a constituent element of the case, but that limit beyond which the person loses the mentioned tax benefit (so-called “dry coupon” at 20 percent). In order to enable the payment, through the F24 form, of the substitute tax, the following tax code was established: “1847” named “Substitute tax of income tax and related surcharges on income from occasional rental activity – Article 49-bis of Legislative Decree No. 171/2005.”


This news item is part of the 12 most-read of 2016. Click here to find out all the other most popular news stories of the year!



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