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  #21  
Old 25.02.2018, 18:40
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

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He is obviously trying to fleece me. I did run a check on the website and got a very small amount as tax. The guy tripled the school fees (25K) received in the quarter we arrived, despite telling him and my contract stating this is a once yearly payment.He made the initial tax return with this 75 K and I refused it saying this was wrong, so he redid this with 25 and threatened me that the tax authorities will not accept it. Anyway this is now submitted to the Tax authorities.
How many children do you have? Were the fees per child or for all of them?
25k per year per child sounds about the right ballpark figure for international schools here.

Last edited by Belgianmum; 25.02.2018 at 20:03.
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  #22  
Old 25.02.2018, 18:43
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

Here you have a couple. Around 100 CHF
https://www.mum-international.ch/steuererkl%C3%A4rung/


https://www.itagaa.com/preise

Suggest you get advice


https://www.reklamationszentrale.ch/...echtsauskunft/




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Dear fatmanfilms, this firm name is Plafida and is no international one.. I approached them on recommendation of a colleague in a similar situation as I and he was charged around 350 CHF for the same duration tax declaration last year. Would their fees increase by 10x in a year is the ridiculous question.
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  #23  
Old 25.02.2018, 19:55
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From her post it seems that calling him was exactly what she tried to do but without success. Registered letter or visit in person would seem like the best option if he's not picking up the phone.




I suspect that the 75K of school fees are what gave rise to the increased tax burden as they are classed as a taxable benefit.

The fee is astronomical for a standard tax return and the fact that there is no breakdown of costs is dodgy.
We were once quoted 3000chf by KPMG to do our tax return, needless to say we declined their offer and went to a tax accountant who only charged us 120chf to do the job.
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This fee is not unreasonable (and wait before you all hang me to dry) but actually quite reasonable for this firm. Apart from corporate work, their target market is 250k + home owner with an investment portfolio. If anything the fault lies with the person who introduced you.

From reading what I have yours is a relatively straightforward return and my suggestion would be to use a Vaud based firm maybe in or near where you live. Expect to pay a little more for the first visit and provided your circumstances are the same maximum chf 500 from there on.

Now how to deal with Plafida. You will not win. Sorry to shatter any illusion but they will give it to their in house lawyer to pursue, and even if you take a lawyer your chances of winning are slim and you'll then end up paying more.

My advice is to call them up, thank them (through gritted teeth) and say you want to settle this matter. Explain the 3,500 is beyond your means and try to settle for 2,000, maybe 2,500. Also ask if you can pay in 5 monthly instalments of chf 500. They'll likely accept just to get rid of you and maybe your colleague can help if he or his firm does business with them.

Good luck.
thank you!

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How many children do you have? We're the fees per child or for all of them?
25k per year per child sounds about the right ballpark figure for international schools here.
Yes you are right it is 25 K per year for my child.My grouse was that this firm "annualized" this payment to 75K for a year....totally absurd isnt it?

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So what have these two to say for themselves. Surely the must have some idea of the fees charged?
They are equally shocked and will not use this agency further...who knows second time unlucky

Many thanks !

Last edited by 3Wishes; 25.02.2018 at 20:12. Reason: merging consecutive replies; please use the multi-quote feature (button to the right of quote)
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  #24  
Old 28.02.2018, 02:02
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

As a matter of interest, does your company pay you the 25K for the fees, or do they settle them direct with the school? This could make a difference in the amount you're taxed.
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  #25  
Old 28.02.2018, 09:19
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

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This fee is not unreasonable (and wait before you all hang me to dry) but actually quite reasonable for this firm. Apart from corporate work, their target market is 250k + home owner with an investment portfolio. If anything the fault lies with the person who introduced you.
They may say that is their target market, but their fees are absurd even so.

Nobody sensible is going to pay 3500 for a tax accountant, that's 1.5% of a 250k gross salary and almost 10x what experienced people here are paying.

For that money I would be expecting proper tax advice and to get more than that amount back in tax efficiency, which from the OPs description was clearly not the case, if anything the opposite.
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  #26  
Old 28.02.2018, 09:29
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

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-I have a valid personal liability insurance upto 1000000CHF. Will this help pay my legal fees if any?
No.

Tom
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  #27  
Old 28.02.2018, 09:47
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

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They may say that is their target market, but their fees are absurd even so.

Nobody sensible is going to pay 3500 for a tax accountant, that's 1.5% of a 250k gross salary and almost 10x what experienced people here are paying.

For that money I would be expecting proper tax advice and to get more than that amount back in tax efficiency, which from the OPs description was clearly not the case, if anything the opposite.
I agree about getting proper tax advice which it seems the OP did not receive, but if you're a higher tax payer, with the wife earning, a property portfolio (with rental income) of chf 3m and an investment portfolio paying dividends and capital gains (which is what I was alluding to) then it's really not a lot.
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Old 28.02.2018, 09:57
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

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Nobody sensible is going to pay 3500 for a tax accountant, that's 1.5% of a 250k gross salary and almost 10x what experienced people here are paying.
Sensible people who get a quote in writing before engaging a professional of any sort are probably not their target market.
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  #29  
Old 28.02.2018, 10:15
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

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Sensible people who get a quote in writing before engaging a professional of any sort are probably not their target market.
A very good point. I've also been guilty of that but have now learned my (expensive) lesson!
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  #30  
Old 28.02.2018, 10:26
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

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As a matter of interest, does your company pay you the 25K for the fees, or do they settle them direct with the school? This could make a difference in the amount you're taxed.
Zero difference as such substantial fringe benefits to an individual employee have to be declared on the annual salary statement (it is like this since 2007):
See Item 72 in the Istruzioni per la compilazione del certificato di salario risp. dell'attestazione delle rendite
https://www.estv.admin.ch/estv/it/ho...leitungen.html

It is even more mind boggling why the accountant tripled the contribution on his own as this 25k contribution should have been on the annual statement. If it was an sub annual tax return, then the consultant is still totally incompetent as one off earnings and deductions are not extrapolated or adjusted.
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  #31  
Old 28.02.2018, 10:37
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

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I agree about getting proper tax advice which it seems the OP did not receive, but if you're a higher tax payer, with the wife earning, a property portfolio (with rental income) of chf 3m and an investment portfolio paying dividends and capital gains (which is what I was alluding to) then it's really not a lot.
You seem to be moving the goalposts a bit! A significant property portfolio with rental income is not what you described in the post I replied to

In any case, this is not what the OP has, so I think we can all agree they got fleeced for what should have been a relatively straightforward return.
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  #32  
Old 28.02.2018, 13:06
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

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They may say that is their target market, but their fees are absurd even so.

Nobody sensible is going to pay 3500 for a tax accountant, that's 1.5% of a 250k gross salary and almost 10x what experienced people here are paying.

For that money I would be expecting proper tax advice and to get more than that amount back in tax efficiency, which from the OPs description was clearly not the case, if anything the opposite.
Yes Newtoswitz....unfortunately I am stuck with this incompetent idiot.
Thank you for the sympathy and sentiment shared
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  #33  
Old 28.02.2018, 13:08
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

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A very good point. I've also been guilty of that but have now learned my (expensive) lesson!
LuganoPirate: I join this list of learners who learn only with expensive lessons
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  #34  
Old 28.02.2018, 13:09
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

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No.

Tom
Thanks Tom, I spoke to the insurance helpline and they confirmed your opinion.
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Old 28.02.2018, 13:19
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

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Sure there was some misunderstanding... but let's be honest - most small tax shops will make a simple return for 200 CHFs in CH. Maybe double that for good measure... still is nowhere near 3400 CHF. What sort of hourly rate did he apply and how many hours did he work on a simple tax return? I'd challenge him directly and if he insists threaten with legal steps. Thats pretty close to fraud in my eyes.
Many thanks Treverus! Thank you to all the folks that have helped me in this difficult time. I finally got this guy on the phone (after innumerable attempts where I could only reach his machine) and tried to talk him through. Needless to say he was very rude,unprofessional, elaborated his qualification and credentials rather than discuss the case. He was suggesting I pay something and then discuss 3 months later....another ploy!!!. Well thankfully I told the crook that I did not want to waste his so very valuable time and we should come to some agreement immediately. The guy has guts he says it would have cost me 6000CHF and he has already given me a 50% reduction
Anyway to cut a long story short....we agreed on 2000CHF in 4 monthly installments and he will send me a new invoice.
The criminal crook and lawyer that he is I hope to never deal with such again and wonder if I can spread this message so he does not fleece others like me...though there may be very few naive ones out there. Any thoughts!!
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  #36  
Old 28.02.2018, 14:50
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

definitely worth asking a price first. this is particularly the case in switzerland. i used Deloitte the first year i needed to file in Switzerland and paid that about 3k + change. i figured at least they would be comprehensive and understand my foreign matters. actually they were very bad, missed some things, left everything to the last minute and had 2 people resign while working on my filing!

the following year i used a local guy recommended by my lawyer. i paid him about 1500 but its fairly complicated return that deals with foreign income, taxes paid and investments as well as property (and mortgages) in CH and US. i consider that reasonable. so don't feel too bad about the 2k. if you can get someone to do your taxes for a few hundred, i'm pretty sure you could just do them yourself and save the cash.

my advice on these matters is to seek local recommendations from businesses people you already have a relationship with. landlord, lawyer, local friends etc. even the comune if you live in a small place.
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Old 28.02.2018, 15:36
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

My tax return has properties with mortgages in UK and CH, foreign rental income, CH income, portfolios in UK and CH.

I pay 500 CHF = 3 hours billed time - while I could work it out myself, that seems OK value to me vs the time it would take me.
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Old 28.02.2018, 15:57
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

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definitely worth asking a price first. this is particularly the case in switzerland. i used Deloitte the first year i needed to file in Switzerland and paid that about 3k + change. i figured at least they would be comprehensive and understand my foreign matters. actually they were very bad, missed some things, left everything to the last minute and had 2 people resign while working on my filing!

the following year i used a local guy recommended by my lawyer. i paid him about 1500 but its fairly complicated return that deals with foreign income, taxes paid and investments as well as property (and mortgages) in CH and US. i consider that reasonable. so don't feel too bad about the 2k. if you can get someone to do your taxes for a few hundred, i'm pretty sure you could just do them yourself and save the cash.

my advice on these matters is to seek local recommendations from businesses people you already have a relationship with. landlord, lawyer, local friends etc. even the comune if you live in a small place.
Absolutely agree. Learnt this the hard way. Anyway I am a salaried person with no foreign assets or income or mortgages etc...so would say mine was a pretty straightforward case...which is the reason I feel cheated, robbed and exploited
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Old 28.02.2018, 16:00
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

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Absolutely agree. Learnt this the hard way. Anyway I am a salaried person with no foreign assets or income or mortgages etc...so would say mine was a pretty straightforward case...which is the reason I feel cheated, robbed and exploited
Should have just gone to the tax office, they'll help you for free (which is how I learned how to do it).

Tom
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Old 28.02.2018, 16:00
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Re: Exorbitant tax consultant fees- What are my options!

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At least his fee is tax deductible- or did he miss that??
I will ensure that I add the fees to my tax return for the subsequent year...thanks for letting me know.
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