Thursday 29 October 2020

Tax office asks Swiss banks about Dutch savers

tax envelopeThe Dutch tax office is planning to approach more Swiss banks about accounts held by Dutch nationals, broadcaster Nos said at the weekend.

Swiss paper Le Temps said on Saturday that the tax office had asked Switzerland’s biggest bank, UBS, about Dutch account holders up to December 31 last year. A tax office spokesman told Nos that two other banks are being approached but did not give further details.

‘The Dutch have requested information about everyone domiciled in the Netherlands who had an account at UBS Switzerland between February 1, 2013 and December 31, 2014, and who have not provided the bank with evidence of tax compliance, as requested,’ the paper said.

The application is the first to be made under the revised Swiss LAAF legislation on exchanging tax information, the paper said.

The Netherlands had operated an amnesty for people with secret bank accounts abroad but the rules for ‘legalising’ illicit savings have been toughened up since July 1.

Legalised

Since 2011, €5.5bn held in secret bank accounts abroad has been ‘legalised’ by the tax office, generating over €600m for the treasury, according to the tax office’s latest report, which was published earlier this month.

Seven out of 10 people who had illicit savings in foreign accounts were over the age of 60, the report states. On average, they had €400,000 on their accounts.  Most money was held in accounts in Switzerland, Luxembourg and Belgium.

When the government first announced it would tackle secret bank accounts, there was no fine for people who confessed. Now, however, people have to pay a 60% fine as well as tax on their secret savings.

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