Belgium: obtaining subsidies for patents

Innovating companies can greatly benefit from tax incentives in Belgium. The different authorities in our country offer several financial benefits for you to enjoy. We list the most important ones here below.

The federal government

In 2007, the Belgian federal government introduced the ‘Tax deduction for patent income’ program. This initiative was in 2017 broadened to the ‘Innovation income deduction’. More information about this can be found here (our website) and here (in Dutch). This Innovation income deduction allows income from patents and other kinds of intellectual property to be exempt from corporate tax for 85%. If there is insufficient profit, the unused deduction can be transferred to the following fiscal year.

The Flemish region

1. The system of ‘KMO-portefeuille’ subsidizes small companies and SME’s for obtaining legal advice about intellectual property, as provided by authorized lawyers, trademark-, design- and patent attorneys. More information about this can be found here (in Dutch). Please note that De Clercq & Partners is not a service partner for KMO-portefeuille.

2. In the ‘Innovation Allowance Dossier’ of the Flemish Agency for Innovation and Enterprise (VLAIO), you can list the protection costs from the results of the Innovation file of intellectual property, capped to 20 000 EUR. In this file, you can add costs for preparatory tasks such as Freedom to Operate searches and registration and filing costs. The financial support will be between 25% and 80%, depending on the company size and type of file. More information about this can be found here (in Dutch).

Brussels Capital Region

The Brussels Institute for Research and Innovation (Innoviris) has a program which finances a percentage of costs spent on intellectual property. More information can be found here (in English).

The Walloon region

1. Patent application: the Walloon Public Service for Research and Technology (WIN4Expertise-Brevets) can provide financial support to SME’s for filing patent applications. More information can be found here (in French) and here (in German). The support consists of three parts: PATDE (novelty search, drafting and filing a patent application), PATEX (formalities after the first filing, after the analysis of the search report, and procedures in view of extending the territorial protection of the priority right and obtaining a patent in the designated states) and PATOP (formalities after an opposition by a third party in Europe with regard to a patent which was the object of a PATEX support).

2. Chèques-Entreprises: for the use of services such as coaching, consulting and education, the Walloon Region will finance 75% of the cost incurred (50% as from July 1, 2023). Some of these financed services include: patent landscaping, patentability opinion, freedom to operate, preparations for patent opposition. More information can be found here (in French). We have been granted the label of "Expert en Propriété intellectuelle" by the Walloon Region! Reach out to us and learn how we can assist you with your Intellectual Property, while you benefit from Walloon subsidies.

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