Revenue claws back €13.6m from offshore income

The Revenue Commissioners clawed back €13.6m from taxpayers who made voluntary disclosures of offshore sources of income since October.

That is according to the Finance Minister Michael Noonan, who confirmed that, to April 26, there were 532 disclosures from taxpayers relating to offshore sums leading to payments to Revenue. He said 12 of those disclosures, which gave rise to payments of €231,543, were received between October 11 and the enactment of the Finance Act 2016 in late December.

After an extension, the deadline for taxpayers to make voluntary disclosures passed yesterday. A spokeswoman for Revenue said its helpline had been very busy this week.

“Missing this deadline means that in addition to any tax and interest payable, anyone affected will be liable to higher penalties, publication in the quarterly List of Tax Defaulters, and possible prosecution,” said the spokeswoman.

The tax authorities sent letters in February to around 500,000 taxpayers who had filed annual returns. The letters warned that Revenue would no longer give taxpayers who held offshore assets any credit for approaching it with details after the deadline.

In his written Dáil reply to Social Democrats TD Roisín Shortall, Mr Noonan stated: “A full analysis of disclosures received will be undertaken by Revenue after the deadline for receiving them has passed, and information about them and the related payments received will be made available when that work has been completed.

“The international environment is changing, with closer co-operation and information-sharing between tax authorities worldwide aimed at identifying those who seek to hide their profits or gains offshore.

“The Revenue is at the forefront of international developments for Auto- matic Exchange of Information, which include the OECD’s Common Reporting Standard, the EU’s Directive on Administrative Co-operation, and the US Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act initiative.”

He said the initiatives will give Revenue “considerable amounts of data about offshore accounts, structures and assets”.

“I am advised also that cases will be investigated with a view to prosecution where the facts and circumstances warrant such a course of action,” said Mr Noonan.


Lifestyle

Sandhoppers for breakfast? It’s just not cricketCrickets for lunch anyone? Time - is running out - to get over our western food prejudices

Why did the Neanderthals go extinct?, asks Richard CollinsDid ear and chest infections wipe out our neanderthal ancestors?

Corkbeg Island near the mouth of Cork Harbour is today an industrial location with Ireland’s only oil refinery whose silver cylinders dominate the low-lying island like giant mugs, writes Dan McCarthy. Islands of Ireland: 'Tanks' for the memories Corkbeg

As Ireland continues to fail to meet its forestry targets, efforts are being redoubled to urge people to plant more trees, writes Donal HickeyMeeting our tree targets must be an environmental priority

More From The Irish Examiner