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DOJ and Swiss Life May Make a Deal

Offshore Account Update

Posted on August 17, 2017 |

If you have offshore funds invested under the control of Swiss Life Holding AG, you need to be aware that Swiss Life is involved in discussions with the U.S. government that could likely lead to your financial details being disclosed. Swiss Life Holding is discussing the U.S. affiliated accounts under its control, as part of an investigation into its cross border business. The U.S. government is interested in many of the different products and services offered to offshore investors, including insurance wrappers.

Swiss Life Holding AG is one of many foreign financial institutions that the U.S. government has been working with in regards to the financial institution's U.S. affiliated accounts.  The U.S. government has been aggressively cracking down on taxpayers who use offshore accounts to evade their tax obligations, as well as cracking down on taxpayers not in full compliance with all IRS requirements. These requirements include a mandate to file an annual Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Account for all offshore investments.   Government efforts to investigate tax evasion even included a Swiss Bank Program, which provided amnesty from criminal prosecution for financial institutions that voluntarily reported the tax-evasion assistance they provided. 

Foreign financial institutions cooperating with the U.S. government, either as part of the Swiss Bank Program or outside of it, have been able to resolve potential legal problems by paying fines, explaining their business in connection with U.S. accounts, and providing comprehensive details about U.S. affiliated account owners and signatories.  Swiss Life Holding AG is likely to make a similar deal with the government whereby it provides accountholder information sufficient to allow the IRS to conduct investigations into U.S. taxpayers.

A Boston criminal tax lawyer can explain what your options are if the IRS is investigating your offshore accounts and can provide assistance with taking a proactive approach to resolving your tax problems if you are not yet under investigation. Give us a call to find out more about how our legal team can help you.

Swiss Life Holding Will Likely Provide U.S. Accountholder Information

Swiss Life Holding AG has a portfolio which includes approximately $258 million in investments owned or controlled by U.S. taxpayers. This is equal to around 200 million francs, so it is a significant reduction from the past when their portfolio of U.S. affiliated accounts was valued at around a billion francs.

Still, $258 million is a lot of money, and it represents valuable accounts from many individuals in the U.S. who could soon find themselves under investigation and facing potential penalties if Swiss Life provides their information to the Department of Justice. 

Swiss Life will likely enter into some type of arrangement with the DOJ where it is expected to pay approximately 100 million francs in penalties. For accountholders, however, the disclosure of their financial information could have a profound impact. Accountholders could find themselves the target of an investigation that could lead to civil fines and even criminal penalties.  A Boston criminal tax lawyer like Kevin Thorn can help accountholders to understand the possible consequences they could face and to create an appropriate legal strategy for dealing with the threat their offshore accounts will be disclosed.

For a consultation, contact Kevin E. Thorn, Managing Partner, at ket@thornlawgroup.com or (617) 692-2989

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