On expiration of the March 31st, 2018 deadline, all taxpayers who fail to take advantage of the Voluntary Assets and Income Declaration Scheme (VAIDS) and are later found to have under-declared their income or assets will be treated as willful tax evaders and will, therefore, face the wrath of the law.
Accordingly, the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has been reported to have engaged on retainership, the service of some of the world’s leading asset tracking and recovery firms to assist in tracking the true assets of those who have not participated but are believed to have underpaid their taxes. The FIRS also plan to “Name and Shame” defaulters to reveal the identities of tax evaders to the public. This is to be supported by criminal prosecution, and recovery of taxes due
with full penalties and interest.
Furthermore, the Relevant Tax Authorities (RTAs) are in the process of profiling certain categories of investigations, in line with the tax compliance reforms. A small team within the Ministry of Finance have, therefore, been quietly gathering information to assess the degree of tax compliance over the past 15 months. We advise clients to regularize their tax status to avoid any the reputational risks that may arise thereafter.