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Spain to publish list of tax-debtors

Source: Eurasia Review - Tue 21st Apr 2015
Spain to publish list of tax-debtors

Spain's Council of Ministers has submitted the Reform of the General Tax Act to parliament, which if approved will publish a list of taxpayers who have debts of more than one million euros.

The three principal aims of the new legislation are to step up the fight against fraud, reduce conflicts and increase legal certainty, explained the Minister for the Treasury and the Public Administration Services, Cristóbal Montoro.

One of the main new aspects of the text is the publication of the list of taxpayers with outstanding debts and sanctions in excess of one million euros. Cristóbal Montoro pointed out that, following the recommendation made by the Council of State, the list will not contain tax debts and sanctions that are deferred or suspended.

Interested parties will be granted a plea phase prior to publication, and any final decision can be challenged through the administrative courts, the government said.

The government plans to publish the first list of debtors in Q4 of 2015 to include those in this situation as at 31 July 2015.

Fight against tax fraud

Another noteworthy measure in the field of the fight against fraud is the "anti-abuse regulation" – a new tax offence that seeks to penalise actions or business transactions carried out with intent to defraud, which are substantially similar to others already classified previously as abusive by the public administration for going against public criteria.

Furthermore, the law extends the powers for investigation and verification – the deadline for verifying tax bases, tax payable or deductions will be extended to ten years – steps up actions by tax administration bodies and strengthens the system for offences and penalties to combat smuggling.

With the aim of increasing legal certainty, the draft law sets new deadlines for inspection proceedings: a longer time period is established (18 months in general and 27 months for particularly complex cases), while limiting the grounds for suspending the calculation of this period and removing delays not attributable to the public authorities. It also contains measures to speed up actions by the financial-administrative courts, such as boosting electronic procedures.

To reduce conflicts in this area, the new legislation extends the powers of the tax authorities to hand down interpretive or explanatory provisions and those who adhere to these criteria are exempt from any form of liability deriving there from.

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* The year Spaniards paid most tax

* How Spain spends your taxes