70% of us would be tempted by tax avoidance measures
7 in 10 people would be “tempted” to avail of the tax avoidance routes for the super-rich, an act heavily criticised over the last number of years.
According to the www.taxback.com's Taxpayer Sentiment Survey, 38% of taxpayers in this country say they’d be struck with a “moral dilemma” if they found themselves in a position whereby they could choose whether or not to avail of tax avoidance measures traditionally used by the super-rich.
www.taxback.com asked 3,000 taxpayers nationwide their views on wealth & tax in this country. According to Revenue, tax avoidance occurs when “tax reliefs and allowances are used in a way in which they were not intended to be used. Tax avoidance often involves contrived, artificial transactions that serve little or no purpose other than to give rise to a tax advantage.”
Barry Flanagan, Senior Tax Manager with Taxback.com spoke of the findings, “The publication of the Panama papers in 2016 and the Paradise Papers late last year sparked a public debate surroundings the ethical behaviour of the super-rich – particularly those in the limelight."
"While it seemed that many people were quick to condemn those who use “creative” tax planning to find legitimate routes to circumvent taxation, I think our survey has shown an honest reality for many people – that if they were to find themselves with significant wealth, over 70% would at least consider trying to legally minimise their tax obligations – and of this 35% would definitely make use of any tax shelters available."
Taxback.com also asked survey respondents whether or not they think it’s fair that the top earners paying a large portion of the overall tax take of the country.
Mr.Flanagan reported, “The results of this question were interesting in their variation. 67% of people would support changes in some form or another - the most common answer (41%) was that people would like to see an overhaul of Ireland’s taxation system to make it more equitable. However, 17% think the top earners should be taxed even more on income – conversely however, 15% believe that it would be to the detriment of our economy as wealthy people would just move their money elsewhere."
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