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UBS tax data deal with US draws closer

City A.M. Reporter
SWITZERLAND has completed a tax review of 500 clients of UBS and is ready to share data with the United States in nearly all cases in line with an August deal that put an end to a bitter tax row.<br /><br />But the clients involved have 30 days to appeal the data transfer to a local Swiss court, which expects many appeals.<br /><br />Washington accused UBS of helping rich Americans to hide money away from the taxman by using secret Swiss accounts, causing reputational damage to the Swiss wealth management giant as well as billions of Swiss francs of client withdrawals.<br />As part of the 19 August deal that got UBS off the hook, Switzerland agreed to offer so-called administrative assistance for data transfer in around 4,450 cases of suspected fraud or continued serious tax offences.<br />Under the agreement, the Swiss had to process the first 500 dossiers by an end of November deadline. They say they are ready to transfer data to the US in nearly all cases.<br /><br />&ldquo;Only in one to two per cent of the 500 cases administrative assistance should be not be granted,&rdquo; said a&nbsp; spokesman for the Swiss Federal Tax Administration.<br /><br />The other cases must be processed by Swiss tax officials within 360 days after receipt of the request for administrative assistance, Swiss tax authorities said.<br /><br />The owners of these accounts have the possibility of appealing against a data transfer with the Swiss administrative court.<br /><br />&ldquo;The Swiss federal administrative court is expecting many appeals,&rdquo; said a court spokesman.