Terms of Business
BTH - BELGISCHE TREUHAND
TERMS OF BUSINESS
(1) Transfer of mandate / Acceptance an scope of the Terms of business
The terms set out in these Terms of business ("these terms") are the contractual basis for all dealings with regard to the acceptance, processing and billing of mandates by the tax consulting firm BELGISCHE TREUHAND GmbH incorporated under Belgian law with its registered office at B-1050 Brussels, Avenue Legrand / Legrandlaan 41 ("we").
These terms can only be changed or revoked by the closing of a fee agreement between us and the client (“you”).
When you instruct us you hereby acknowledge without any restriction that you have been duly informed of these terms and that these terms are binding for you.
The instructions given to us by one of your employees, superiors, or a representative of yours (legal or fictitious) are binding for you.
The instructions are confirmed to us in writing (i.e. by letter, fax or e-mail).
The instructions cover any kind of duty that is necessary for the relevant and appropriate fulfilment of the mandate and for the safeguarding of our duty of care.
If you modify your instructions, the terms will remain applicable. We shall immediately confirm in writing your instructions given by phone / the extension of instructions given by phone, which are considered to be concluded if you do not revoke them in writing within 6 hours from the sending of our written confirmation.
Our work and advice are provided exclusively for the benefit of the client that instructed us. Without our express and written consent, no entity or person other than you is entitled to use or to benefit from the work and advice provided by us. Moreover, no entity or person other than you may claim any rights in relation to the services rendered by us or to the manner and means by which we carried out the agreed services.
(2) Means of communication
E-mail, mail, fax or telephone are used as means of communication between you and us. Unless expressly agreed otherwise in writing, we assume you agree to communicate by e-mail or fax, although we cannot guarantee the security or secrecy of such communication.
It is your responsibility to ensure the secure exchange of data via your fax number and e-mail address that you provided to us.
You expressly acknowledge all possible risks of mistakes, omissions or delays, which can occur in communication by fax or e-mail and especially in oral communication.
In particular, you acknowledge that a secure or faultless e-mail transmission cannot be guaranteed. Information can be intercepted, damaged or destroyed, lost, delayed, incomplete or virus-infected. We cannot be held liable for any failures or omissions regarding the content of our message, which may arise from transmission by e-mail. To guarantee a faultless transmission, you should request the use of hard copies.
(3) Implementation of work / Time schedule / Documents
You agree that we are free to organise our work with all the human and material resources we consider appropriate or necessary. We act to the best of our knowledge without guaranteeing any result to you.
You must tell us if matters are or if matters become particularly urgent or require action by a specific time and we will try to the maximum extent possible to comply with this, although this is without any guarantee. Where work is carried out within restricted timescales or unusual circumstances, you accept that we may be unable to provide you with the same level of advice as that which may be appropriate where such restrictions or circumstances do not exist.
You must provide us with all the accurate information and provide us with all relevant documents in your possession, which are necessary for the good fulfilment of our duties.
The documents must be supplied in a legible electronic format and must be comprehensive, precise and truthful.
You must provide us with timely, accurate and up to date information relating to the agreed services and notify us promptly of any material change in the information or circumstances. You must fulfill our requests for additional information and documentation in good faith and in good time.
We expect you to review and/or to check with appropriate care all advice, explanatory notes, proposals for action or for settlement, agreements, drafts and other documents sent by us to you or a third party and, as far as these documents need to be signed and/or duly completed by your means, to return them to us by the means of communication set out under the abovementioned article (2).
Upon request, we agree with you upon the schedule of the completion of our mandate. Nevertheless, the agreed schedule is merely a guideline and is not binding for us.
After sending our final invoice, we will destroy the file (with exception of the documents you asked us to restitute) after expiration of the legal detention period. We are entitled to withhold your hard copies and documents until all open invoices are paid.
(4) Fee structure / Office Costs / Disbursements
Unless otherwise agreed we generally charge by calculating our fees on a time spent base. The inspection and/or review of any documents such as correspondence, contracts, relevant documents, models, tables etc. (an non-exhaustive list), preparatory research and translations can also be invoiced on a timely manner. The billed time units will be multiplied by our hourly rates, which can be adapted by us on a regular basis.
We will notify you of the hourly rate in writing at the time of the confirmation of the mandate. This hourly rate is applicable to all members of the office uniformly. This rate is VAT excluded.
Fees can be increased without prior notice on a yearly basis by up to 10%, starting one year after the beginning of the mandate.
An initial consultation of max. one hour can be agreed upon for a flat fee of 250,- € excl. 21% VAT to give you a general assessment of your case and some concrete solutions and approaches. Every exceeding consultation is billed on a timely manner.
Single inquiries by telephone are billed with a fixed fee of 50,- € excl. 21 % VAT.
Office costs such as correspondence costs, communication costs, copying, printing, scanning and other file-related expenses (a non-exhaustive list) are charged separately. You will find an overview of the office costs rates (VAT excluded) as set out in the appendix.
Expenses include mainly fees due for certifications, declarations and certificates, publication costs of the Belgian State Gazette, registration costs, costs for commercial register extracts etc. and are billed separately for their nominal value.
Expenses for external consultants, such as experts, auditors, etc. are borne by you if appropriate consent is given by you.
Our fees, costs and disbursements are due by the client even in the case of an early termination of the contractual relationship binding him to us.
(5) Fee assessments
Our fee assessments do not include either office costs or disbursements.
Such fee assessments are merely guidelines and not to be considered as agreed fees or quotations even when minimum and maximum fees are indicated to you.
If the actual time spent in the matter lies below the previously mentioned time assessment, only the actual time spent is billed. If the actual time spent is higher than the previously mentioned time assessment, the actual time spent will be billed without any obligation of a prior notice of the additional time expenditure.
(6) Payment of fees, office costs and disbursements
Our invoices relating to our fees, office costs and disbursements are due for payment within the terms stated on the invoice. Late payments are sanctioned with default interests of 10 % p.a.
Furthermore, in the event of late payment and an unsuccessful additional extension period of 10 days, we are entitled, at the end of the extension period, to cease further work until the complete settlement of our invoice or to end our engagement immediately by simple written notification. In this case, we shall not be held liable for any loss or damage incurred by you as a direct or indirect result of such ceasing or termination of our engagement.
(7) Liability for fees and costs
The principal is always liable fort he fees and costs incurred. If the principal is not the client, he is entirely liable for any unpaid fees, costs and disbursements if the client is in default and / or unwilling to pay.
(8) Limitation of our liabilit
Our legal liability insurance meets the legal requirements. Our liability towards you in respect of any breach of duty or negligent act with regard to the fulfilment of our mandate is limited to an absolute maximum amount of € 125,000. Any other liability claims are waived.
We cannot be held liable for any actions or negligence of any other third party, for example notary, auditors and lawyers, even when they are acting on our behalf. You entitle us to accept in your name any limitation of liability of third parties.
(9) Data protection
You agree that we will collect, hold and process your personal data to enable us to provide services to you. We will not disclose your personal data to third parties, unless legally required or agreed upon. You have the right to access your personal data and can request rectification of inaccurate or incomplete information.
(10) Applicable law / Jurisdiction
These terms, the relationship between the parties and / or our services are governed solely by Belgian law. Should the provisions of the Belgian international private law or any other substantive law provisions or provisions of the procedural law refer to another legal system, the reference to such third legal system is to be considered irrelevant in the relationship between the parties.
Any dispute arising out of or in connection with this relationship and / or with our services shall be submitted to the exclusive jurisdiction of the competent courts in Eupen, Belgium. We are nevertheless also entitled to bring the dispute before the courts of Brussels and to choose the language of the proceedings to be either French or Dutch. Appendix:
Appendix: Belgische Treuhand - Overview office costs’ rates
|Correspondence||1 page||€ 9,-|
|Fax||1 page||€ 9,-|
|1 page||€ 5,-|
|Copy costs||1 page||€ 0,50|
|Telephone costs||1 minute||€ 1,667|
|File opening||one-off||€ 150,00|
|Travel costs||km||€ 0,80|
|Disbursements (Bailiff, Court expenses, Notary, Parking,…)||1 Eurocent||as incurred|