Tax Law

Report: Swiss Banks Likely to Pay Billions, Name Secret Account-Holders to Settle US Probe

To settle a U.S. probe of offshore tax evasion, 11 financial institutions in Switzerland are likely not only to pay billions of dollars but to identify to the feds the 5,000 to 10,000 Americans who hold secret accounts there, Bloomberg reports in an article that relies on five unidentified sources.

The negotiations are taking place in a civil investigation, but the U.S. is also pursuing criminal probes of the financial institutions to determine whether they helped American customers evade income tax.

Some 30,000 U.S. taxpayers with foreign accounts in Switzerland and other countries have come forward since 2009 in response to amnesty programs that promised reduced penalties, in exchange for voluntarily paying tax bills and providing information to the Internal Revenue Service and Department of Justice about bankers and advisers who helped them

Related coverage: “IRS Announces New Amnesty Program for Those Evading Taxes Via Offshore Accounts” “4 Foreign Bankers Indicted in US, Accused of Conspiracy to Help Americans Hide Assets, Evade Taxes” “US Tax-Evasion Probe Is Eyeing Americans with Offshore Accounts Tied to Israel Banks”

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