European Union seeks to overturn Apple’s $14.8 billion tax verdict

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Apple's battle with the European Union rages on.
Photo: New York Public Library/Unsplash CC

The European Union wants to overturn Apple’s 2020 victory in the massive $14.8 billion tax dispute, which has been raging for the past several years.

Bloomberg reported Monday that the appeal challenges a July court judgment ruling against Apple. The court decision going against the EU was a big setback for lead Commissioner Margrethe Vestager.

The report notes that:

“The EU said that the lower court improperly conflated Apple’s lack of employees at two Irish units and the company’s level of responsibility for intellectual property on iPhone and iPad sales across Europe. Judges failed to properly weigh the EU’s analysis of the Irish branches and showed ‘contradictory reasoning’ in a separate part of their findings.”

Apple vs. European Union

The European Union ordered Apple pay the massive $14.8 billion sum in August 2016. This was based on Apple allegedly receiving a sweetheart deal with favorable tax rates in Ireland. An investigation claimed that Apple paid as little as 0.005% on all European profits in 2014. Apple paid the money, but disputed the verdict. Eventually, the two sides met in court last summer — with Apple picking up the win. In July, the European Union’s General Court vetoed the previous European Commission verdict. It said that Apple had not been by given a “selective economic advantage” by Irish tax policies.

The gist of the battle between Apple and the EU is the question of where value is both created and taxed. Apple believes that this should take place in the U.S., where it is based. The EU, however, wants to tax tech giants more heavily in Europe.

Apple has always argued that it pays all of the tax that it is legally obliged to.

Source: Bloomberg