Taxpayers and their tax consultants may personally institute tax proceedings. In case of considerable interests professional advice and assistance is, however, indispensable. First of all, a solid analysis should be made of the case and the chances of success and risks of a lawsuit. On the basis thereof a road map should be laid out in proper consultation. Knowledge and experience with tax proceedings is a requirement for this.
Procedural tax law has become more complex. Matters like the completeness of the case file, the operation of the closed-session panel, the scope of the legal battle, the timeliness of the submission of evidence, the impact of the decision requiring information, the reversal and aggravation of the onus of proof, the lodging or not of (cross-)appeal, and the convocation and examination of witnesses are aspects of procedural tax law with which the lawyers of De Bont Advocaten are highly familiar as they are regularly confronted with them. Errors on these essential points of proceedings may have an adverse effect on the ultimate result in the same manner as command of procedural law may lead to success.
The outcome of tax proceedings is to an important extent determined by the question who bears the onus of proof. Knowledge of the rules of the law of evidence is therefore of extreme importance for conducting tax proceedings. The fact that evidence can be produced in tax proceedings through conjectures may surprise many. Nonetheless it occurs ever more often that an inspector tries to create a conjecture by adding up all sorts of alleged facts and circumstances, assumptions and suggestions. It should be avoided to underestimate this strategy as only a correct assessment of the rules of evidence can lead to the desired outcome of the tax proceedings.
The lawyers of De Bont Advocaten have extensive experience and expertise in conducting proceedings, not just in preparing procedural documents but also in examining witnesses and experts and orally arguing a case before a court.