Shabby behaviour

ON an individual basis we may dread a revenue inspection but as a society we depend on an effective tax collection system to provide essential services.

In that context the Revenue Commissioners are to be congratulated for collecting more than €30m in unpaid tax and penalties during an inquiry into the financial affairs of more than 500 medical consultants.

These are some of the best paid and best educated people in this society and inappropriate tax management shows them in a pretty shabby light. Especially as their representative organisations say one of the reasons consultants’ posts are not filled is that Irish pay rates are too low though international comparisons refute this. The accountants and auditors, both the focus of a revenue inspection, involved in this chicanery have hardly covered themselves in glory either.

Of course these consultants are not the only individuals to test the boundaries of our tax codes but it is, even if it is old-fashioned, disheartening that such a privileged group of people try to avoid their responsibilities to the society that employs them and educated them at such great cost.


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