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Influencers & taxes: what you need to know

6 min leestijd

Are you an influencer? Do you know your financial rights and obligations? And is setting up a dedicated business on your to-do-list?  

In this post, we’ll take a deepdive and tell you all about the financial aspect of influencing. And at the end of this blog you will find a handy freebie: an invoice template. 🎉 

As an influencer in Belgium, do I need to pay taxes?

The law and regulations for influencers used to be rather vague. Which made it quite difficult to understand what you should and shouldn’t do. For a while now, guidelines and rules have been in place, but still… For most of us, it often remains unclear. Or at least not clear enough. 😉  

 That’s why we took it upon ourselves to lay out a few relatable situations, so you can easily find the answer you’re looking for. 

Can’t seem to find an answer to your unique situation? Send us a message and we’ll figure it out for you!

Situation 1: I am an influencer and I collab with brands on a regular basis. Am I a business?

Short answer:  

Yep, you’re a business and you pay taxes on your income as an influencer.  

Long answer: 

You are a business and therefore you have certain obligations. 

The first step is to pay a visit to your local business counter, such as Acerta, Xerius or Liantis. There you register your company with the Crossroads Bank for Enterprises and for VAT. 

When everything is made official, you put your company info on your social media profiles and on your website. Make sure to mention: 

  • your name 
  • your enterprise number
  • your contact details 
  • the address of your company.*  

As a business, you send invoices to your customers, you do your bookkeeping, pay VAT and social security contributions and, of course, taxes.  

‘On a regular basis’ means you do a collaboration more than once. Applying for our Influencer Squad is also part of this. In doing so, you express your interest in collabing more often. 

*More at the end of this blog. 

Situation 2: I am not an influencer and do a collaboration sporadically, do I need a VAT number? 

Short answer: 

You don’t need a VAT number. You can declare your income from this collab under ‘miscellaneous income’ at a tax rate of 33%.   

Long answer: 

For sporadic collabs, you don’t need a VAT number. If you don’t have influencing ambitions, it is still perfectly possible to set up a one-off, exceptional brand collab. 

However, you’ll still need to declare the income you receive for this collab. In this case, you file this compensation under ‘miscellaneous income’ at a tax rate of 33%. 

This income can be both a financial compensation or a product.   

Please note, if you enjoy doing these types of collaborations and you would like to do so on a regular basis, then you will need a VAT number.  

belastingen betalen influencer België

Situation 3: I am an influencer, but I only receive products, no financial compensation. I don’t have to apply for a company number, right?  

Short answer: 

You still need a company number. 

Long answer: 

Even if you only receive products from companies or brands (the so-called barter deals), the legislation applies to you. You must state the received products in your tax return. The value of the product is equal to the amount of money you would have to spend in normal circumstances when you buy the product yourself. 

Tip: when working with a brand, ask about the product value 

Legally, you must declare everything you receive. So feel free to ask about the value of the product you received. 

To VAT or not to VAT, that’s the question. 

What does it mean to be liable for VAT?  

Being liable for VAT means 2 things. On the one hand, you are going to charge your customers – in this case companies or brands – VAT. On the other hand, you’re allowed to reclaim VAT, the VAT deduction. 

When you invest in something for your business – for example a new camera – you can reclaim the VAT on it.  

And am I always liable for VAT? 

Is your annual turnover lower than 25,000 euros excl. VAT? Then you might be eligible for the exemption scheme for small businesses. 

This means that you do not charge VAT to your customers, you don’t submit periodic returns and you don’t pay VAT to the Treasury. This makes the administrative part of your business a whole lot easier. 

Please note, even if you benefit from the exemption scheme, applying for a VAT number is still mandatory.  

Does your turnover exceed 25,000 euros? Then you’re not eligible for the exemption anymore and you will have to charge VAT.  

As an influencer, do I have to put my address online? 

As a company, you are obliged to share your company data publicly. An influencer is no exception. 

In 2022, articles appeared stating that influencers were required to share their business address publicly, just like any other company. According to law, of course this is correct. But since influencers often work from home, their business address is also their private address. And that complicates things. 

Fortunately, Eva De Bleeker (Open VLD) presented a solution. Influencers can establish themselves in a business center and share that address on their social media. Check out BeCommerce and Feweb. 

And there you have it! A few relatable influencer. If you have any questions about this blog, check out the links below or send us a message.

Find more information here: 

Free invoice template!

Download your free invoice template here.

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