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Business Management and Continuity in these Challenging Times

In light of recent events and the IDF’s operation, we have gathered relevant information which pertains to the security and economic situation in Israel.

We are here to help.

General Information

No new foreclosures will be imposed and no debt execution and foreclosure proceedings will be implemented until October 20, 2023. This date will be updated as necessary. Interest and linkage differences will apply as required by law. Please note that no current foreclosures will be lifted and no debts will be waived but only the relevant proceedings will be suspended. Applications can be submitted by legal representatives to the ITA’s Public Inquiries System – PIS. Special applications can be filed by representatives who have been drafted to army reserve duty in addition to the PIS also via email to the ITA’s collection office at haravot-barzel-veahifa@taxes.gov.il.

The Committee approved the second and third readings of the revised law for deferring reporting dates amended following the ICPAS request as follows:

  1. Statute of limitation of filing tax returns for the 2022 tax year – as an exception and in view of the effect of the ongoing war on the headcount in the offices of the representatives and taxpayers, tax returns for the 2022 tax year filed by January 31, 2024 will be viewed as filed on December 31, 2023 for the purpose of statute of limitation (provided that the taxpayer’s mandatory tax returns for the 2020 and 2021 tax years had been filed by the end of the year following the reported tax year, for example, the tax return for the 2021 tax year had been filed by December 31, 2022).

  2. Deferral of charge dates as per Section 3(i1) – the charge date of debit balances as per Section 3(i1) accumulated by the end of 2022 will be deferred by three months, allowing taxpayers to repay withdrawn debit balances that were due on December 31, 2023 until March 31, 2024. It should be noted that if the debit balances are not repaid by said date, the charge date (including interest and linkage differences) will be the original charge date as per this section.

  3. Extension of statute of limitation period – since the ITA also faces certain limitations due to the ongoing war, the statute of limitation period of tax assessment hearings for tax years whose statute of limitation was the end of 2023 (normally the 2018 tax year) will be extended by three months from the end of the relevant period. Notwithstanding the aforesaid, it should be noted that according to a clarification that will be issued by the deputy director of tax assessments and audits at the ITA once the legislation is made public, as was presented by the ITA’s representatives to the Finance Committee, a tax assessment proceeding will only be permitted if a material public audit process had been launched before October 31, 2023 (such as application to a representative or taxpayer for disclosure of documents, email inquiries etc.).

No penalties will be levied on late filings until November 23, 2023. However, charges will be made for interest and linkage differences until the actual payment date. In certain cases, a specific application can be filed with supporting documents for waiver of interest and linkage differences charges.

Drafted army reserves and residents of the South and Gaza (& immediate surroundings) who have not filed said reports for September 2023 qualify for full waiver of interest and linkage differences charges. Specific applications must be filed online.

The first date for filing annual reports for 2022 by companies has been deferred from October 31, 2023 to November 30, 2023.

The second date for filing annual reports for 2022 by individuals has been deferred from November 30, 2023 to December 31, 2023.

Capital declarations that are due for September 1, 2023 and thereafter have been extended until the December 31, 2023 or the date of filing the reports for 2022 based on the representatives’ extension arrangement.

Withholding tax certifications which expired by September 30, 2023 have been extended to November 11, 2023. Taxpayers who do not hold such certifications can apply to the respective tax assessment office using the link or through the representatives’ application system using the Shaam website.

Filing for tax objection and appeal extensions, filing documents and managing tax assessment procedures through all the tax systems – in the coming fortnight, as a show of consideration, the ITA will offer flexibility in managing current procedures and will initiate new procedures. A directive has been issued to firms by the senior deputy director of tax assessments and audits at the ITA via the following link.

Special application channels have been launched at the PIS and for drafted representatives regarding income tax, VAT and real estate taxation.

The duty of employees to report retirement from their workplace using the new Form 161 has been deferred to January 1, 2024.

The date for filing claims for indirect damages caused by Operation Shield and Arrow has been extended to October 31, 2023 (see more information below).

The validity of automated accounting system management software registration certificates which expired on or after September 30, 2023 has been extended to November 30, 2023.

The ITA and the Ministry of Finance have issued press releases, according to which the Minister of Finance has instructed the Director General of the ITA to identify residents whose homes have been damaged by the war to grant them preliminary financial aid as prepayment from the property tax compensation fund. Since the employees of the compensation fund are currently not allowed to enter the settlements of the Gaza area due to security reasons, the fund’s management and the heads of the Eshkol, Hof Ashkelon and Shaar Hanegev regional councils have agreed to cooperate in order to assist the residents.

It is intended that the compensation fund will receive from the regional councils in the Gaza area lists of names of homeowners whose homes have been damaged and means of communicating with them. Once the lists are obtained by the fund, the employees will contact the families, explain their rights and open claims on their behalf and if applicable make sure the families receive prepayment on account of the compensation. The fund has appointed a project manager to continue supporting and assisting the families.

The National Insurance Institute issued a press release on the subject, see the following link.

Due to the war and widespread draft of IDF reservists, the payment for the reserve duty from the date of this notice until further notice will be made at the beginning of each month and not at the end of the reserve duty period as practiced before. The payment will be automatically forwarded to the bank account. There is no need to file a claim. For more information

The Customs and VAT Department has issued a new procedure outlined in the following link.

Due to the war, from October 16, 2023 until further notice, for the calculation of import taxes, the transaction price will not include the shipment costs incurred to importers. For more information

In the context of the national emergency caused by the war and to provide effective and rapid response to the various needs during wartime, the ITA will allow nonprofits and public benefit companies with valid certification as per Section 46 to the Income Tax Ordinance (Revised), 1961 to expand their operations and raise donations to assist in the war effort even if such operations are not defined in their articles of association as their public objective.

See the full directive outlined in the following link.

Following applications by numerous local companies, the ITA’s management held conversations with the Israel Growth Forum and agreed to allow employees to donate vacation days to the war effort, free of withholding tax, as long as the employer designates the funds as donations. An official directive will be issued soon.

In view of the current security situation, the ITA will allow remitting input withholding tax from tax invoices without an allocation number until March 31, 2024.
For more information

In view of the current security situation caused by the Words of Iron War and the numerous questions received on how to charge the value in use of private cars used by drafted army reservists and employees under unpaid leave, following are the published guidelines.

As per the Association Law of 1980, nonprofit associations are required to file annual reports (financial statements, verbal reports and more) by June 30 of the year following the end of the reporting period. However, as per an extension arrangement reached with the Institute of Certified Public Accountants in Israel, the last extension for filing the annual reports was supposed to be October 30, 2023.According to a notice  released by Attorney Shuli Avni Shoham, Director General of the Israeli Corporations Authority and Registrar of Associations, another extension has been granted until November 30, 2023.

The notice also states that this extension also applies to associations that received proper management certification for two years (2023-2024) which are required to file reports for 2022 as a prerequisite for the extension of the validity of their proper management certification for 2024.

On October 15, 2023, the Bank of Israel issued an initial idea, designed to assist populations affected by the war, mainly residents of the South and Gaza surroundings, drafted security forces, evicted populations and first-degree relatives of those killed, kidnapped and missing. Link to the BoI’s notice.

In view of recent developments, the insurance renewal circular had to be adjusted to allow policyholders to take educated risk management steps and inactivate certain insurance coverage items as well as allow insurers to extend renewal periods beyond original termination dates when failing to contact policyholders. This amendment applies until the earlier of the date of termination of the national state of emergency or January 1, 2024.

The Commissioner of the Capital Market, Insurance and Saving Authority has allowed institutional entities to exclude their call center data during wartime from their annual averages.

This amendment applies until the earlier of the date of termination of the national state of emergency or January 1, 2024.

In order to enable institutional entities to operate in a national state of emergency and optimally utilize their resources for assisting their customers and in view of the challenges experienced by the public of savers to make decisions regarding their pension savings during these times, the Commissioner has deferred the effective date of the Institutional Investor Circular 2022-9-30 which revises the directives regarding provident fund investment channels to July 1, 2024.

In view of the curtailment of operations by the majority of players in the pension savings market due to the war and to allow the market players, particularly institutional employers, to prepare for the adoption of the open format circular directives, it has been proposed to defer the effective dates of some of the circular’s directives as stated in the Commissioner’s notice.

Due to the war and the technical difficulty experienced by institutional entities to comply with the duty of issuing quarterly member reports for Q3 2023, a deferral of 30 days has been granted and the duty of sending the quarterly report via post at the member’s request has been canceled.

It has been proposed to defer the effective dates of certain directives regarding employers with fewer than 3 employees to June 2024. It is also proposed to defer the effective date of the summary feedback directives which require delivering the feedback on the same date.

A 31-day extension will be granted until December 31, 2023 for issuing periodic reports of pension funds, managing companies and insurance companies, including SCR reports for the data as of June 30, 2023.

The following extensions have been granted for filing reports to the Commissioner by pension funds, managing companies and insurance companies:

  • A 31-day extension until December 31, 2023 for issuing quarterly periodic reports and actuarial reports of pension funds, quarterly periodic reports of managing companies and quarterly periodic reports of insurance companies.
  • A 31-day extension until December 31, 2023 for issuing yield component reports of pension funds, provident funds and insurance companies.
  • A 60-day extension until March 31, 2024 for filing Own Risk and Solvency Assessment (ORSA) reports.

As a relief, it has been proposed to defer the initial reporting date of forward-looking sensitivity analysis scenario reports required in the context of ORSA reporting to the next reporting date in January 2025.

An amendment aims to offer greater flexibility to institutional entities when making capital market investments specifically with respect to the scope of analytical procedures that must be performed before purchases of bonds in the secondary market and extending the validity dates of existing analyses. The circular also allows institutional investors to purchase corporate bonds with greater flexibility compared to the recommendations of the Hodak Committee, to facilitate investments and optimize secondary market opportunities for a predetermined period of three months.

It is also proposed to alleviate the Commissioner reporting requirements applicable to institutional investors with respect to material active or passive excesses and extend the timeframe for reporting such excesses from 10 business days to one month, this as a temporary provision for three months.

An amendment which offers a relief for the duty of the institutional investor’s board and its committees to physically convene at least once a quarter. It is proposed to eliminate this duty until the end of 2023.

In view of the ongoing war in Israel and the resulting reduced operations of insurance companies, the National Insurance Institute and the sick funds, difficulties have arisen in gathering the necessary information for reviewing and settling LTC insurance claims as required by the circular. Therefore, it has been proposed to amend the circular to alleviate the requirements for reviewing and settling such claims alongside the continued supervision of the insurance companies’ compliance with the circular’s directives by the Authority and oversight over the LTC insurance claim settlement process including necessary timeframes.

As a form of relief, it is proposed to defer the date of initial filing of the chief actuary report from the end of 2023 to 2024 to allow filing the actuary report as of December 31, 2023 with the related solvency capital requirement (SCR) reports in 2024.

The IIA has launched a fast-track grant channel for Israeli startup companies with significant technological assets, and short runways for companies struggling to raise funds from their existing investors during these challenging times. In addition, the European Union’s Horizon program responded to the Innovation Authority’s request and postponed the application deadlines for leading European programs.
For more information

Economic Responses to the War: The MOF’s outline offers responses for the security challenges, the affected residents and the general market. 
For more information

Compensation for direct and indirect damages and business continuity grant

The Employer and Human Capital Development Administration and Ministry of Economy jointly launched an employee training grants program which will apply during Operation Swords of Iron and consists of two designated tracks – classroom training and mentorship. The tracks will operate until the Minister of Defense declares the end of the special state of emergency in the Israeli Homefront. The grants range between NIS 4,000 and NIS 15,500 per approved employee. Applications can be filed for up to 50 employees per employer for both new and current employees. An essential enterprise may apply for up to 200 employees. The program is available in the following segments: industry, metal, wood, welfare, food and beverage manufacturers, transport and storage services, agriculture, toiletries, cleaning and cosmetics manufacturers, transportation, communications, IT services, construction, hotels, security and more.

The program will be based on “first come, first served” until full budget utilization.

*The information presented in this website is for access purposes only. For specific information please refer to the source.

How EY Can Help?

We would be happy to hear from you and help, in any way possible. We have gathered several highlights for our clients and non-clients to assist in dealing with these difficult times.

Consulting

Government assistance

Itay Zetelny

Sigal Griba

Funding and cash flows

Tzafrir Tomashin

Cyber solutions and consulting

Olivier Mandel

Sharon Cohen

HR

Jody Bareket

IR and PR management assistance

Jody Bareket

Supply chain

Alon Levy

Ido Aon

Crisis management

Ariel Horowitz

Zachi Refaeli

Analyzing and assisting in business continuity and backup setup

Ariel Horowitz

Adiram Kidron

David Carmi

Risk management

Raz Zontag

Digital Solutions

Establishing, managing and maintaining the key KPIs for the business in situations like this.

Craig Levy

Tax

Ziv Manor

Gilad Shoval

Oren Hagay

Sigal Griba

Immediate assistance in the war effort

Timing of receipts and payments

Timing of expenses and income during the war

Deduction of expenses for tax purposes

Transfer prices

Eyal Gonen

Secondary transactions

Oren Hagay

U.S. Taxation

Amir Chenchinski

Yonatan Kasztan

Audit – Business Continuity

First Response Support Team

EY teams, Partners and Managing Directors are at your service.

We have set up a first response support structure for companies and enterprises without a designated project manager or contact person.

Tax

Sigal Griba

Oren Hagay

Gilad Shoval

Yaron Stein

Consulting

Ariel Horowitz

David Carmi

Strategy & Transactions

Itay Zetelny

Tzafrir Tomashin

Hi-Tech

Ido Bar Nir

Eli Barda

Noam Canetti

Multidisciplinary

Zion Sason

Liraz Egison

FSO

Tal Hay Zion

Real Estate

Yaki Buaron

Other Initiatives

Nati Alon

Itay Zetelny

EY for the Community

EY and its people have rallied to help the community through volunteering, making donations and assisting with external communications. Some of the projects we have initiated include:

We would appreciate in hearing more initiatives and collaborations that can be shared

Orly Shmuelson

Orit Ertel-Dlugin

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