Is self-employment right for you?

Simulate your taxes

Understand how much taxes you will have to pay as a self-employed professional in Belgium. Depending on your profession you can choose typical deductible costs and save taxes.

FAQs about taxes for self-employed professionals

What is the main difference between being an employee and being self-employed for my income?

An employee can easily see their net income on their pay slip, while a self-employed individual needs to manually calculate their gross and net income, taking into account various deductions.

How do I calculate my self-employed income?

To understand how much you need to earn to cover your living expenses and, preferably, make a profit, you must be aware of the costs associated with being self-employed in Belgium. Your clients’ payments constitute your gross income. To determine how much you will retain from this income, you need to take the following costs into account:

  • Social contributions: 20,5% from your taxable income
  • Professional expenses: These include a wide variety of deductible expenses necessary for conducting your independent business, such as your computer, phone, and other essential items.
  • Taxes: If you are a sole proprietor, you will be subject to personal income tax (25-50%). If you are a business owner in a partnership, you may also be subject to company tax (20-25%).

Considering all these costs will make it easier for you to determine a fair price for your products and/or services.

Is it easy for self-employed professionals in Belgium to determine their net income?

Not really. It is often difficult for self-employed professionals to determine their net income without examining their bank statements or estimating based on their revenue and expenses. Here you find our guide on calculating your income.

How much taxes do I have to pay when I'm self-employed?

Let’s take this example to understand how to calculate taxes for self-employed professionals:

You earned €42,000 last year and were able to deduct € 8,000 as business expenses. The taxable amount on which you have to pay personal income tax is therefore €34,000. The Belgian tax system is subject to progressive tax brackets, varying from 25 to 50%. In this example, this corresponds to an income tax liability of € 9,138.50.

The tax brackets are revised every year, so make sure to check the current rates here.
You can optimise your taxes by deducting professional expenses, such as business insurances, your car, restaurant visits with clients, utility bills and much more. Don’t forget your social contributions are also tax deductible! You can find more about professional expenses here.

Which insurance should I get as a self-employed individual in Belgium?

As a self-employed individual in Belgium, it can be beneficial to consider professional insurance, such as hospitalisation insurance, limited liability insurance, or income protection insurance. These insurances are not obligatory but can cover what your regular health insurance (which is mandatory by law) doesn’t cover. They can help you avoid unpleasant surprises.

Most professional insurances are 100% tax deductible, but it’s useful to know that hospitalisation insurance is not.

Success Stories

Discover real stories of people who dared to take the step into self-employment and successfully realised their dream of owning their own business in Belgium.

Briana Stuart, choreographer, dance and teacher

Originally from the US, Briana’s passion drove her to Belgium, where she became a thriving self-employed artist. Discover how she got her business successfully set up in Belgium. Read all about her story here.

Justin Petit, influencer

Justin loves photography and social media, so he made it his profession. As a self-employed content creator in Belgium, he creates captivating content for his clients.

Charlelie Dagnelie, architect

In Belgium, architects often have no other choice than to become independent. Find out how Charlelie navigates in the world of self-employment. You can read his story here.

Ask a Tax Coach

Do you have further questions about if self-employment is the right choice for you? Schedule a personalised 15 minute chat with one of our Accountable Tax Coaches now, to answer all of your questions.