tax controversy

Insights

Criminal Tax Law

For companies and individuals clients

Deloitte Legal advises companies, groups of companies and individuals in all cases related to criminal tax law. The combination of advice related to fiscal offences with general tax advice allows us to optimize the results for our clients, in particular when it comes to the preparation of disclosure letters.

Our main areas of advisory are:

Preparation and representation at tax disclosures (i.a. disclosure letters in the context of alleged tax evasion)

The development in the area of criminal tax law over the past years has been characterized by administrative and criminal divisions of tax authorities as well as prosecution departments taking up measures against any alleged misconduct under fiscal law, such as tax evasion or negligent tax evasion in a much faster and much more severe manner. At the same time, formal requirements for exemption from punishment by disclosure letter were considerably tightened. In any matter involving an alleged breach of applicable tax laws, it is recommendable for companies and their representatives as well as individuals to closely co-operate with their tax and legal advisors, in particular, when it comes to measures directed at limiting the consequences of any alleged breach, such as for example:

  • Subsequent tax declarations pursuant to § 153 AO (correction of returns)
  • Subsequent tax declarations pursuant to § 378 III AO (disclosure letter for reckless understatement of tax)
  • Subsequent tax declarations pursuant to § 371 AO (disclosure letter after tax evasion)
  • Coordination of company-internal and intra-company discussions on disclosure letters
  • Disclosure letters by individuals for untaxed foreign capital investments
  • Representation of individuals and companies in front of administrative and criminal divisions as well as prosecutions departments subsequent to a disclosure letter or subsequent to the opening of tax criminal investigations due to other reasons

 

Criminal defense in Tax Law Cases

Criminal defense in tax law cases is often characterized by out of court discussions or negotiations with administrative and criminal divisions of tax authorities as well as prosecution departments. But even before any preliminary proceedings in relation to criminal tax law have been initiated, it is of utmost importance to prepare declarations and information addressed to tax authorities in a complete and correct manner, so as to avoid criminal tax allegations in the first place. Therefore, criminal tax defense already begins with the preparation of subsequent tax declarations or disclosure letters. This is why we offer especially the following services

  • Coordination of mandatory information to be submitted prior to preliminary criminal proceedings
  • Close co-operation with tax advisors
  • Criminal defense prior to court proceedings
  • We always aim for an out of court settlement of initiated preliminary proceedings 

 

Advice concerning tax field audits in areas prone for being considered criminal tax offences

In the event of tax field audits, issues may arise which give rise to a qualification as a matter regulated by criminal tax law. Irrespective of whether in such event, the tax authorities take a decision to have preliminary criminal proceedings initiated, it is always advisable to also consider possible implications of criminal tax defense when communicating with tax authorities, auditors or administrative and criminal divisions. At the same time, companies should be aware that they are under the obligation of correct tax declaration. In this regard, we recommend to have the company and its offices/representatives to not only closely cooperate with its tax advisors but to have legal advisors called in at an early stage. At Deloitte and Deloitte Legal, we are able to offer both tax as well as legal services, including advice with respect to tax criminal law. We offer especially the following services:

  • Coordination with regards to scope and content between the company, its tax advisors and Deloitte Legal
  • Safeguarding the legal interests and rights of criminal defense, also during the audit
  • Protection from tax legally adverse settlements in the course of the concluding discussion

 

Representation of companies, groups of companies and individuals in the case of dawn raids

Due to the fact that such searches or raids usually occur unexpectedly, dawn raids and/or house searches undertaken by tax authorities and their tax fraud investigation departments can be quite stressful, both for the company affected by such raids as well as for individuals affected by house searches. Also, such raids and searches will in most cases be associated with the confiscation/seizure of objects and/or important company data. This is why it is of utmost importance to have experienced lawyers called in as soon as possible when being searched, so that legal counsel can help in making sure that officers, representatives and/or employees of the company involved in or the individual affected by the search or raid will not take any actions that might have harmful effects for subsequent criminal proceedings. Moreover, they can help supervise the search in order to protect the defendant’s rights (especially the defendant’s right to refuse to give evidence) but also in ensuring business continuity. Deloitte Legal offers the following services:

  • Sympathetic but clear communication with and on the same level as the officials conducting the search 
  • Protection of the rights of the client affected by the search
  • Conducting employee trainings for the preparation for possible search situations

 

Advice regarding internal special audits

Wherever mistakes with respect to taxes or even cases of misconduct have occurred, companies, companies should conduct internal special tax audits in order to review and, to the extent required, optimize the corresponding internal processes, also with the aim of avoiding future misconduct and/or fines. Deloitte Legal provides support with internal special audits to help with the accurate evaluation of the misconduct discovered under criminal tax law and the optimization of the relevant processes.

 

Your Contact: Heiko Ramcke
Your Contact: Heiko Ramcke
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