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Portuguese 'Amnesty' Not About Tax Forgiveness: PM

by Ulrika Lomas, Tax-News.com, Brussels

13 October 2016


The Office of Portugal's Prime Minister has "categorically denied" that its new tax debt repayment scheme is a program for "tax forgiveness."

Under the so-called Special Program for Debt Reduction, individuals and companies with unpaid tax up to May 31, 2016, and unpaid social security contributions up to December 31, 2015, can settle the outstanding amounts by the end of this year without incurring interest or court costs.

Alternatively, tax debtors can enter into a payment plan to pay any back taxes owed in installments over periods of up to 11 years.

Although the program resembles those amnesty offered by other countries lately, the Government has insisted that the program's objective is not compliance-driven, but intended to help taxpayers to clear debts accumulated through the period of fiscal austerity in Portugal.

The Government estimates that total tax debt has reached EUR20bn (USD22bn), of which EUR3bn is in the form of unpaid social security contributions.

TAGS: individuals | court | compliance | tax | value added tax (VAT) | Portugal | interest | social security

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