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Whistleblower rewards

Newbie

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Hi,

 

I note that the USA and other juristrictions offer rewards for whisleblowers. I believe that these can be as much as 30% of the tax recovered.

 

Should the ATO (Aust Govt) also legislate a reward system for whisleblowers? 

 

I believe that the $3.5 bill corporate tax gap that I just read about could be appreciably closed if this was the case. I futher believe that this would also encourage far better compliance in the long term.

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Enthusiast

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You can submit a suggestion to the ATO Here but as the ATO does not make any laws, you can also contact your local government member

 

Personally, I'm not sure offering a financial reward would greatly improve the number of truthful reports of tax evasion - it may increse the numbers, but an increase in false/baseless reports would just clog the system and make it harder to investegate legitimate reports.

 

I'd be more inclined to look into establishing a system that would offer a degree of protection for those that may be involved in tax evasion in some way (i.e. a seinor executive of a company, or an employee who is being paid cash that isn't declared) if they choose to report it - as these would be the people best able to contribute to investegations and most aware of any tax evasion occuring. 

 

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This is my personal view; I’m an ATO employee who chooses to help out here in my own time.

2 REPLIES 2

Most helpful response

Enthusiast

Replies 1

You can submit a suggestion to the ATO Here but as the ATO does not make any laws, you can also contact your local government member

 

Personally, I'm not sure offering a financial reward would greatly improve the number of truthful reports of tax evasion - it may increse the numbers, but an increase in false/baseless reports would just clog the system and make it harder to investegate legitimate reports.

 

I'd be more inclined to look into establishing a system that would offer a degree of protection for those that may be involved in tax evasion in some way (i.e. a seinor executive of a company, or an employee who is being paid cash that isn't declared) if they choose to report it - as these would be the people best able to contribute to investegations and most aware of any tax evasion occuring. 

 

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This is my personal view; I’m an ATO employee who chooses to help out here in my own time.

Newbie

Replies 0

Hi Smouldery,

 

I know what you mean by clogging the system.

To lessen this, you could put conditions on the system. eg a minimum of $1m of tax potentially avoided, TFNs supplied, copies of documentation etc. Also the reward based on collections.

If a $1m claim was successful, with the info basically handed on a platter to the ATO and say $300k being the reward for the whistleblower, the net $700k would fund a whole lot of ATO time. The $300k would be more than covered by the penalties applied.

The system has worked in other countries - eg USA. Perhaps an investigative team should be sent to the USA to see how they have done it?