Dáil Éireann - Volume 481 - 08 October, 1997

Written Answers. - Revenue Commissioners.

97. Mr. Higgins (Dublin West) asked the Minister for Finance the steps, if any, he is taking to have the Revenue Commissioners inquire into the Ansbacher accounts to ascertain if any of the moneys in these accounts were there for tax evasion purposes; and whether the Revenue Commissioners have powers in this regard. [15840/97]

[456] Minister for Finance (Mr. McCreevy): It is a matter for the Revenue Commissioners, acting within their powers, to take any action needed to uphold the implementation of the tax code in the light of the information contained in the McCracken report. The Commissioners have already indicated that any such action is being taken.

As regards access to bank accounts, the principal legislative provisions governing such access by Revenue are contained in section 18 of the Finance Act, 1983, and section 13 of the Waiver of Certain Tax, Interest and Penalties Act, 1993. These sections, which are similar in effect, provide that an authorised officer of the Revenue Commissioners may, in certain circumstances, seek an order from the High Court, or a determination of the Appeal Commissioners, to require a financial institution to provide particulars of undisclosed bank accounts. Information may be sought only in relation to a named individual who is ordinarily resident in the State and only in circumstances where that person has not made a return or the authorised officer has reason to believe that a return made by that person is incorrect.