On 16 November 2017, the Swedish Government presented a proposal to introduce the requirement of personnel registers in a number of types of operations. The proposal sent to the Council on Legislation includes a proposal for the extension of the current system regarding personnel registers to also apply to vehicle services operations, food stuffs and tobacco wholesalers and to massage and beauty parlors. The purpose of the proposal is to reduce tax evasion and tax avoidance.
Personnel registers are already, today, required for restaurants, hairdressers, laundries and the construction industry. A personnel register should include, amongst other things, documentation of the necessary identification details regarding the business operator, as well as regarding the personnel working in the operations.
Compliance with the proposed rules is to be controlled by the Swedish Tax Agency and in the case of errors or the lack of a personnel register, fees will be levied.
A number of types of operations will be impacted
The current regulations regarding personnel registers in restaurant, hairdresser and laundry operations are proposed to also apply to vehicle services operations, food stuffs and tobacco wholesalers and massage and beauty parlors. These operations are defined as follows:
- by vehicle services operations is meant business operations involving the maintenance and reparation of such motor-driven vehicles as those referred to in the Regulation on Road Traffic Code Definitions.
- by food stuffs and tobacco wholesale operations is meant business operations involving wholesale trade in food stuffs, beverages and tobacco. By wholesale operations is meant the further sale of goods to entities other than consumers, and this also refers to the acquisition, more simple processing, packaging, storing and delivery of goods in conjunction with such operations.
- by body and massage parlors is meant business operations involving the treatment of parts of the external appearance of customers or care of their external appearance, however, this does not include treatment which is usually executed by health and hospital personnel, injection treatments and chiropody.
According to the proposal, the existing regulations regarding control visits and control fees are also to apply to these types of operations.
Furthermore, there is a proposal for an extension of the scope of the obligation of reporting in maintaining a personnel register in the case of so-called mixed operations. This implies that the obligation of maintaining a personnel register is proposed to also apply to other operations which a business operator undertakes in the same premises. If a business operator undertakes both operations covered by the obligation to maintain a personnel register and other operations in the same premises, the obligation to maintain a personnel register also covers the personnel working in those other operations. There is also a proposal that the work undertaken by sole proprietorship business operators, company management in closely held companies and closely held partnerships, as well as these individuals’ family members, are to be listed in the personnel register in the case there is the obligation to maintain such a register.
It is proposed that the rules will begin to apply on 1 July 2018.
The proposed regulations comprise a stage in fighting against tax evasion and the use of illegal labor and in an effort to prevent companies from using illegal labor to achieve competitive advantages. For the operations concerned, these regulations will imply a greater degree of administration and it will be important for these companies to review their routines in terms of how they will maintain such a personnel register.