In this area, you will be working on the issue of tax fraud. Like detectives, you will have to work on a case by case basis, and as you uncover the necessary information, you will have to draw your own conclusions.
Sweden Tax Office campaigne to promote the request of a bill or a receipt (in Swedish, with subtitles in English).
Tax fraud consists of not paying the government (town council, provincial government, etc.) the taxes corresponding to the income or benefit obtained in a given period.
Tax fraud can take many forms:
- Tax evasion: consists of concealing income in money (in the same country or in another country, normally in so-called "tax havens"); it can also consist of not declaring an increase in assets.
- Underground economy: consists of performing economic activities outside the "tax circuit" controlled by the revenue office.
- Applying false deductions; submitting false invoices... when presenting the corresponding tax returns.
A tax haven is a territory or state that is characterised by applying a tax regime that is especially favourable to non-resident persons and companies, which take up residence for legal purposes in that country. These advantages consist of either a total exemption or a very significant reduction in the payment of taxes.
There are many different names for the underground economy with slight differences in meaning: invisible, informal, hidden, etc. This part of the economic activity dos not appear in official statistics, and does not enter the tax circuits, since neither its protagonists (company managers and workers), nor its results (production, costs, profits, etc.) declare taxes.
At the same time, the consequences of tax fraud affect public policy and make it more difficult to implement a policy of redistribution. It is therefore important to remember that tax fraud reduces the capacity of the public institutions to offer different services (education, social services, health, grants, subsidised housing, etc.). In short, tax fraud has a negative impact on most of the population... and, in particular, on the population with fewest economic resources!
Tax fraud is prosecuted and depending on the amount of the fraud, the sanctions are as follows:
- If the tax fraud is over €120,000, it is classed as a tax crime; below that amount, it is a tax offence.
- Tax crime is punishable with sentences ranging from one to five years in prison. It also entails a fine that can be up to 6 times the value of the fraud committed.