Sever­ity of penal­ties for tax de­fault­ers

Irish Examiner - - Opinion -

Read­ing through this week’s tax de­fault­ers list , I was struck, as usual, by the dra­co­nian law which sees in­ter­est and penal­ties, with the to­tal owed to the Rev­enue, com­ing to dou­ble the orig­i­nal tax al­legedly owed.

This has the ef­fect that for charges re­gard­ing tax, there is a dystopian rem­edy meant to de­ter oth­ers from pay­ing tax as they may feel is com­pli­ant, only then to be hit more se­verely than the vi­o­lent crim­i­nals whom CAB go af­ter.

It ap­pears that to be on the safe side one should pay way more than what is ex­pected. Try get­ting over­pay­ments paid back in full!

Check through the list, and one will find there is a dis­tinct ab­sence of cor­po­ra­tions and multi­na­tion­als who en­joy the sweet­est of tax ex­emp­tions and good-buddy deals. Per­haps it is time to ac­knowl­edge the good in­ten­tions of al­leged tax de­fault­ers, many of whom are mo­ti­vated by pro­vid­ing ser­vices and em­ploy­ment as they strug­gle to stay afloat. It ap­pears any profit ac­cru­ing must be scru­ti­nised even in the same way as if it was il­le­gally come-by.

We are meant to view these cit­i­zens as crim­i­nals. Given the se­vere tax laws and as­sorted charges, I al­ways be­lieve the hard-work­ing Ir­ish of pri­vate busi­ness, could be classed as vic­tims also. Robert Sul­li­van

Bantry Co Cork

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