As published on caymancompass.com, Wednesday 10 June, 2020.
Government has released a bill that aims to strengthen the compliance, enforcement and cooperation functions of the Tax Information Authority.
The Tax Information Authority (Amendment) Bill, 2020 was gazetted on Friday, 29 May, and will be presented by Minister of Financial Services Tara Rivers at the next meeting of the Legislative Assembly.
The provisions in the bill will allow for enhanced collaboration between the competent authority and other government entities under appropriate legal channels.
The proposed new functions of the authority are to monitor and enforce compliance with the Tax Information Authority Law and regulations, including the power to investigate suspected breaches.
Under the new rules, the authority would have the power to examine the affairs or business of any person through on-site inspection, audit reports and annual returns, and collect and share statistical data.
The bill will also make it a summary offence to knowingly or wilfully submit false or misleading information to the authority. The offence attracts a fine of $10,000 or imprisonment for a term of five years, or both.
In a press release, the ministry said the legal changes would further demonstrate Cayman’s compliance with international standards regarding the exchange of tax information. The ministry is inviting public comments on the bill in preparation for the next session of the Legislative Assembly.
Cayman continues to retain a ‘largely compliant’ rating by the OECD’s Global Forum on Exchange of Information on Request and, after economic-substance legislation came into effect last January, was found to be in good standing with the OECD’s Forum on Harmful Tax Practices, the ministry said.
International peer reviews and assessments are ongoing, including the Global Forum’s peer review of effectiveness in automatic exchange of information, the follow-up reviews of exchange of information on request, and FHTP monitoring of economic-substance implementation.