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Can some tax company deceive me about my tax return? Can they change my bank details

Question:

Hello, I just wanna ask if my tax return did some other company than the tax office, could they deceive me about my tax return money? Or the tax office first will send me some letter when I can check my personal informations, for example, like my bank account number? Thank you much! 

Answer:

Technically any person could change your bank account by contacting the tax authorities with a request to change the bank account. This can be done with a special form which can be downloaded from the website of the tax authorities. If the person who prepares this form has your personal details and BSN/sofinumber and can copy your signature it is indeed possible that the bank account is changed without your knowledge, especially when a power of attorney from you and a copy of your passport is provided. 

It was also possible to change the bank account details just before the tax return was filed electronically, so after you approved the tax return for filing. Or the M form which had to be filed on paper for the year of migration could be manually adjusted by providing other bank details. 

The tax authorities are aware of this situation and are changing the procedure. It is now no longer possible to provide bank account details when the tax return is filed. 

The procedure is also going more towards a citizen service portal which can be accessed with the DigiD and where changes can be made. Therefore it is important that you keep your DigiD secret. Changes will be made in the coming year(s). 

Difficult in your situation is that currently the tax authorities may not be willing to provide information about the bank account they have in their system over the phone. Besides the fact that they are not allowed to speak English to you. They can say whether a payment has been made though. 

If it turns out that a payment was made but not to you you can request the tax authorities to make the payment to your account. The tax authorities will then chase the person whos bank account was used to receive your refund instead. But there can be some discussion first. 

As soon as the tax return has been processed by the tax authorities you will receive a tax assessment. This tax assessment will mention the bank account to which the payment has been made. If this number is unknown to you contact the tax authorities directly. It takes the tax authorities normally around 6 weeks up to 3 months to send you a provisional tax assessment. 

You can also request the tax company to send you a report of the electronic filing. This report mentions exactly what was sent to the tax authorities. This is however only possible when the company used commercial tax software. If you are still in the Netherlands you can also go to the tax company and ask them to show you what has been filed. If an M form is filed an electronic report is not available. 

You can also write a letter to the tax authorities and provide them your full bank details with the request to check these and explaining your doubts. The tax authorities should come back to you with their findings. But this is a more time consuming option.

Unfortunately banks and tax authorities in general do not perform a check to see if your name matches the name of the account holder to whose account the refund is paid. 

Interested to see what the result is of your actions and what the experiences are of others with respect to this subject. 

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