In what could be one of the newest big leaks to come to light concerning how the rich and famous handles their taxes, the Paradise Papers could list off various big names who have money and assets in offshore tax havens.
What do we know so far about the Paradise Papers?
Similar to the leak of the Panama Papers, the Paradise Papers came from the German newspaper, Süddeutsche Zeitung, who contact the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists to investigate the matter, according to Forbes. Reportedly, the leak features around 13.4 million documents. As with the Panama Papers, it is possible that celebrities and politicians could be listed by the documents.
The ICIJ website has discussed what could be found in the papers as more information has been made available; that said, as more information is released, there is still the possibility that most of the actions detailed by the Paradise Papers could still be perfectly legal.
As with the similar controversy over the Panama Papers, an important issue to keep in mind is that those listed in the papers could be bound to their individual country’s laws. In the United States, citizens are required to file a tax return every year with the IRS by law. While failing to file is a misdemeanor, filing falsely, such as hiding money earned in offshore accounts, is legally deemed a felony. Criminal penalties are even possible, including prison time if applicable. Added to that, the FATCA, or the “Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act,” demands foreign banks to reveal American accounts that host over $50,000.