Meet the Expert is our series of blogs where we share more about the team behind our innovative software and managed services.
As a global organisation with indirect tax experts across all regions, our dedicated team are often the first to know about new regulatory changes and latest developments on tax regimes across the world, to support you in your tax compliance.
We spoke to Daniela Dinkova, compliance services manager here at Sovos, to find out more about her role and how she helps captive clients navigate the complex regulatory and reporting requirements of Insurance Premium Tax (IPT).
Can you tell me about your role and what it involves?
I joined the captives practice at Sovos in 2017. My main responsibility as a compliance services manager is overseeing and managing the delivery of IPT compliance services to a large portfolio of clients, with the majority being captive insurers.
We recognise that although a captive’s IPT compliance requirements match those of a commercial insurer, their operational needs differ. This is why Sovos operates a dedicated captive practice, and each year our captive customer base grows.
We provide an annual program review prior to client renewals including validating tax premium calculations and preparing payment summaries.
We split by tax type and territory, and prepare and submit all the necessary IPT returns, to meet all deadlines, settling payments to the relevant tax authorities and regulatory bodies.
What makes IPT especially challenging for captives and cell companies?
Captive insurers participate in the largest and most complex multinational insurance programmes, yet despite their intricate requirements, many lack the operational resources or technology often found in larger traditional insurers to support compliance and underpin programme management.
Our captive clients vary in size, geography and business class and include protected cell captives. The number of cells in a Protected Cell Company (PCC) vary from two to as many as 30 for some of our clients. Unifying the process of collecting data and required details proves to be very challenging for such captives. Cost allocation across cells for prepayment requirements is also a challenge for a PCC, with prepayment amounts based on previous tax periods.
What are the common queries that Sovos helps captives with?
A challenging combination of the pandemic and Brexit has meant there have been many uncertainties for captives over the past year. We have helped many of our clients in setting up new entities, including providing advice on registration and IPT reporting requirements.
Furthermore, as captive’s write their own programmes with insurance coverage specific to the needs of the parent company, we assist our clients with their queries relating to location of risk rules, bespoke product mapping, exemptions applicable to their products, treatment of negative premiums, tax reclaims, and confirmation of taxes chargeable to policyholder and insurer. Additionally, some territories require further reporting such as the Contracts and Premium report, Claims and Motor reports in Italy, the annual reporting in Greece and this is when our captive clients require our guidance and assistance due to the complex process surrounding the registration and submission.
Sharing our knowledge on tax application and reporting requirements enables accurate insurance tax and parafiscal charges calculation prior to binding, ensures compliance and protects a captive’s reputation and profit margins.
What would be your top tip for captives for IPT filing and reporting?
Due to little consistency in reporting requirements country to country, I would advise our captive clients to obtain understanding of submission deadlines, required policy information and reporting requirements. This will help them to ensure their internal processes capture all reporting requirements, at underwriting level and ensure effective data collection.
The wide range of training sessions, webinars, tax alerts and newsletters offered by Sovos are a very good way to stay informed about the latest developments on tax regimes across the world. By accessing these, captives can stay ahead of complex and fast changing government regulations and adjust their internal processes accordingly.
Need help with IPT compliance? Get in touch about the benefits a managed service provider can offer to ease your IPT compliance burden.