Tax controversy—Austria—Q&A guide
Published by a LexisNexis Tax expert
Last updated on 04/12/2020

The following Tax practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Tax controversy—Austria—Q&A guide
  • 1. What is the relevant legislation relating to tax administration and controversies? Other than legislation, are there other binding rules for taxpayers and the tax authority?
  • 2. What is the relevant tax authority and how is it organised?
  • 3. How does the tax authority verify compliance with the tax laws and ensure timely payment of taxes? What is the typical procedure for the tax authority to review a tax return and how long does the review last?
  • 4. Are different types of taxpayers subject to different reporting requirements? Can they be subjected to different types of review?
  • 5. What types of information may the tax authority request from taxpayers? Can the tax authority interview the taxpayer or the taxpayer’s employees? If so, are there any restrictions?
  • 6. What actions may the agencies take if the taxpayer does not provide the required information?
  • 7. How may taxpayers protect commercial information, including business secrets or professional advice, from disclosure? Is the tax authority subject to any restrictions concerning what it can do with the information disclosed?
  • 8. What limitation period applies to the review of tax returns?
  • 9. Describe any alternative dispute resolution (ADR) or settlement options available.
  • More...

Tax controversy—Austria—Q&A guide

This Practice Note contains a jurisdiction-specific Q&A guide to tax controversy in Austria published as part of the Lexology Getting the Deal Through series by Law Business Research (published: May 2021).

Authors: bpv Hügel Rechtsanwälte GmbH—Gerald Schachner; Kornelia Wittmann; Nicolas D Wolski; Lucas Hora

1. What is the relevant legislation relating to tax administration and controversies? Other than legislation, are there other binding rules for taxpayers and the tax authority?

The Austrian tax authorities must apply Austrian statutory tax law (including EU directives that have been transposed into national law) as well as constitutional law and directly applicable EU law. Bilateral double taxation conventions are transposed to national tax law by parliament and are, as such, directly applicable.

Ministry of Finance regulations serve to substantiate the law, and within the boundaries provided by the law are also binding for all taxpayers and the courts.

In contrast, guidelines or ordinances issued by the Ministry of Finance are binding only for the tax authorities themselves, and not for the taxpayer or the courts. Such guidelines provide explanations and interpretations of Austrian tax law and are intended to harmonise interpretations of the tax law. If a taxpayer relies on these guidelines or ordinances, he or she can expect protection of his or her good faith under certain conditions.

Case law of the European Court of Justice and the domestic courts is also

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