Google Ireland not taxable in France via its French subsidiary

On 25 April 2019 the Paris Administrative Court of Appeal confirmed the decision ruled on 12 July 2017 by the first-instance Court that Google Ireland Limited did not have a permanent establishment in France between 2005 and 2010 and was therefore not taxable in France. The key question before the first-instance Court in the original case was if Google Ireland Limited had a permanent establishment (PE) in France. The French tax administration (FTA) argued that the online advertisement services that Google Ireland Limited provided to customers in France through a French Google subsidiary (Google France SARL) constituted a PE in France, and was therefore taxable. The Paris Administrative Court of Appeal found that the establishment in France did not have the capability to carry out the advertising activities in France on its own behalf and declined the statement of the FTA.

12 Jun. '19 Nedelina Vasilkova

Facts and points of discussion

In 2002, the American company Google Inc. had concluded a marketing and services agreement (MSA) with the French subsidiary Google France SARL (for support and marketing services in France). In 2004 Google transferred the marketing and services agreement to Google Ireland Limited, residing in Ireland. The MSA included the performance of digital services through the online advertising platform of Google (AdWords). Under the MSA Google France SARL provided commercial assistance and advice to French customers who used the AdWords service. The services provided in France were invoiced by Google Ireland Limited. Hereafter a summarized group overview is provided.

Nedelina Vasilkova

Nedelina Vasilkova is an associate and applicant member of the Dutch Association of Tax Advisers (NOB)

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