StartTax DisputeField AuditCommencement of Criminal Tax Proceedings during a Company Tax Audit

Commencement of Criminal Tax Proceedings During a Company Tax Audit

Advice and legal protection by a tax law specialist

Most taxpayers and their tax advisers are unaware how to obtain the maximum legal protection, if criminal proceedings for tax offences are commenced during a company tax audit. It must be pointed out, that a tax auditor may, at any time during a company tax audit, recommend criminal proceedings for tax offences to be commenced on the basis of suspected tax fraud. This option is increasingly used on the basis of current internal administrative directives included in the rules for company tax audits (Betriebsprüfungsordnung, BpO). §10 BpO subjects the tax auditor to a duty to immediately report any initial suspicion of an offence arising during a company tax audit directly to the Authority for Fines and Offences or the Tax Investigation Unit, which are responsible for their investigation (§ 386 AO). A mere suspicion of a tax offence suffices for such criminal tax proceedings to be commenced. This also applies in cases, where the suspicion is not directed against the taxpayer himself, but against a third party (§ 10 Sec 1 BpO).  

Information on criminal tax proceedings instigated by the tax auditor.

LHP Attorneys provide information on the authorities and duties of tax auditors, the duty to cooperate in taxation affairs and offer recommendations on measures after proceedings have been commenced. Information on the inspection of case files after commencement of criminal proceedings.

1. Tax auditor’s duty to explain legal rights in criminal tax proceedings

2. Duty of the tax auditor to commence proceedings during a company tax audit

3. The commencement of criminal tax proceedings while a company tax audit is conducted is highly contested: duty to cooperate in taxation matters vs. prohibition of self-incrimination in criminal proceedings

4. Instructing a tax attorney/tax law specialist after criminal tax proceedings have been commenced during an audit

LHP Attorneys and Tax Advisers 
Not only because investigation measures by a tax officer can be ambiguous: Our experience as tax law specialists and tax advisers will certainly benefit you, if criminal proceedings for tax offences are commenced during a company tax audit.

LHP: Attorneys at Law, Tax Law Specialists, Tax Advisers PartmbB


An der Pauluskirche 3-5, 50677 Cologne,
Telephone: +49 221 39 09 770


Tödistrasse 53, CH-8027 Zurich,
Telephone: +41 44 212 3535

Auszeichnungen & Zertifikate als Steuerkanzlei - LHP Rechtsanwälte