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IRS gets access to 5,000 Swiss bank accounts

NEW YORK - The Internal Revenue Service announced Wednesday that it has reached a deal with the Swiss government, gaining access to thousands of UBS AG accounts that Americans might have used to avoid paying taxes.

IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman said that it had gained access to about 5,000 UBS (UBS) accounts held by rich American investors. In a teleconference with reporters, Shulman said these accounts have held $18 billion in assets at one time, though he did not have a current tally for their value.

The announcement is the result of a settlement that the IRS and Switzerland-based UBS reached earlier this month to track down and identify wealthy Americans who have avoided paying taxes by hiding their assets in offshore accounts. Shulman said the deal should deter Americans from evading taxes in the future.

“Thousands of taxpayers who avoided paying taxes in the past are being brought into compliance,” said Shulman. “As this agreement demonstrates, the world of international taxes has drastically changed.”

Shulman said that investors can still “get right with their” government by reporting their tax activity by the Sept. 23 voluntary disclosure deadline.
That's the power of IRS, United Sates to get what ever data they want from anywhere in the world. UBS is notoriously popular for such activities to rescue the tax evaders. Now they are exposed. I think UBS should provide such data to all member countries of United States, where there is rule of law, independent judiciary and established democracy. Selective approach can't solve any global issue.
I have no hesitation in welcoming the success that IRS achieved in getting the access of 5000 Swiss Bank Accounts of US tax evaders. But what about the requests of other countries who requested for the same from UBS? You have rightly said, selective approach can solve the problems of a particular country but it is not healthy for other emerging nations.

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