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CJEU Case C-482/18 / Opinion

Google Ireland Limited v Nemzeti Adó- és Vámhivatal Kiemelt Adó- és Vámigazgatósága.

Policy area:
Deciding Body type:
Court of Justice of the European Union
Deciding Body:
Advocate General
Decision date:

Key facts of the case:

Reference for a preliminary ruling — Freedom to provide services — Article 56 TFEU — Restrictions — Tax provisions — Tax on advertising activities based on turnover — Obligations relating to registration with a tax authority — Principle of non-discrimination — Fines — Principle of proportionality.

Outcome of the case:

For these reasons, I propose that the questions referred by the Fővárosi Közigazgatási és Munkaügyi Bíróság (Budapest Administrative and Labour Court, Hungary) be answered as follows:

  1. EU law does not preclude the introduction of an income tax linked to the official language of the Member State concerned in the present case.
  2. A specific registration obligation with a view to implementing and enforcing a special tax (here the tax on advertisements) does not, as such, infringe the freedom to provide services.
  3. The specific manner in which the Hungarian Law on the taxation of advertisements imposes coercive measures on undertakings established outside Hungary constitutes an indirect restriction of the freedom to provide services which is not justified on account of its disproportionality.
  4. The limitations of the possibilities for legal redress with regard to the very high coercive penalty payments in connection with the Hungarian tax on advertisements also constitute an unjustified restriction of the freedom to provide services.