Swiss Secrecy Worries Increase
More and more we report on the changes in the world of tax and how the transparency is becoming clearer. Last month the European Commission and Switzerland signed an agreement to exchange information on the financial accounts of each other’s residents starting in 2018, preventing taxpayers from hiding behind Swiss accounts. This type of agreement will likely be reached with other European countries considered tax safe havens.
Add to that the recent announcement that two more Swiss banks have entered into deferred prosecution agreements with the US government over tax evasion issues involving their American account holders. Americans are essentially being forced into US tax compliance by many banks refusing to accept American clients who are not compliant.
This year 11 banks have been added to the list of financial institutions whose clients face a 50% penalty under the current IRS voluntary disclosure program instead of the programs basic 27.5% penalty. This percentage is charged against the taxpayer’s highest annual financial asset base during the years covered by the disclosure program. This now brings the total number of banks whose clients will suffer this penalty to 23.
If you have questions about your tax situation, don’t hesitate to contact us.