I opened 2 equity savings accounts in different banks by mistake although an individual taxpayer is only allowed to have one account. What should I do?
According to tax rules in force, anyone who has more than one equity savings account must pay a punitive tax increase, which under the rules is €10 per day and per account. The reason for the existence of the punitive charge is to prevent abuse of the tax shelter that equity savings accounts offer to the account holder. There is a maximum limit of €50,000 that can be deposited in one account, but those who attempt abuse have opened 2 or more accounts in their name.
Tax year 2020
However, if you have opened your second account by mistake, you are entitled to submit an application for dismissal of the punitive charge if it concerns the 2020 tax year. This requires that your second account has no history of deposits or other transactions, and that a misunderstanding was the reason why you opened it.
The Tax Administration will soon send written instructions to all individuals who have 2 equity savings accounts with no transactions in one of them. After the Tax Administration has finished your tax assessment for 2020, you can submit an application for dismissal. To do that, you can log in to MyTax or complete the paper form no. 7302 (“Application for relief from tax” – Hakemus verosta vapauttamisesta, available in Finnish and Swedish).
However, if a back tax has been imposed in your 2020 tax assessment, you must pay it even if you have submitted the application. If you have difficulty in paying the back tax and you need more time, you can ask for a payment arrangement in MyTax.
Tax year 2021
From tax year 2021, no punitive tax increase is imposed on individual taxpayers who have obviously made a mistake of some kind that caused them to hold more than one accounts simultaneously, on the condition that amounts of deposited money or corporate stock were in max. one account during the tax year. In the same way, no increase – or a reduced punitive increase – is imposed, if:
- considering the small size of the balances in the equity savings accounts, the punitive tax increase would be unreasonably high, or
- there are justified grounds for the tax authority to reduce or refrain from imposing the punitive increase. Examples of justified grounds include the individual taxpayer’s sickness, during which he or she was unable to manage their equity savings account, and problems with the IT connections, which prevented the taxpayer from closing the extra account or accounts.