Daily Management Review

Swiss banks to sort out dormant bank accounts


04/27/2017


Recently, Swiss banks decided to "clean up" their assets. They launched a website with information on currently existing "dormant accounts", which keep at least 52 million ownerless Swiss francs in total. Now, owners of these accounts or their heirs have five years to claim their rights to these assets, otherwise the money will be transferred to the Swiss federal budget.



Deyoadutrys
Deyoadutrys
The category of dormant bank accounts implies any accounts which owner was last contacted at least 60 years ago, and which contains at least 500 Swiss francs.

André Naef, one of founders of FAST Search, which, on behalf of banks, is looking for the dormant accounts’ owners, believes that some banks are improperly fulfilling their obligations. The former top manager of a private bank, today he helps the banking structures to put things in order, and to find assets of his private clients in Switzerland.

Naef believes that those four thousand accounts that remained inactive for at least 60 years are only the tip of the iceberg. Banks are not in a hurry to reveal how much they have on these accounts. HOWEVER, estimations of authoritative Swiss Banking Association (Schweizerische Bankiervereinigung), around 2,250 Swiss francs are now located at approximately 2,900 accounts.

Since January 1, 2017 Switzerland works under the new OECD standards in the sphere of information exchange on financial accounts. Thus, Switzerland launched the process of implementing international standards in the field of taxation. Exchange of tax information with other states will be carried out on the basis of agreements regulating the mutual provision of legal assistance in criminal cases opened in connection with possible evasion from payment of taxes.

In this case, we are talking about the bank accounts and movements. The first tranche of the exchange will be made in 2018, but information on the Swiss accounts is already being collected. In this situation, a large number of "ownerless" bank accounts can become a serious problem for banks, as, according to André Naef, "the assets in these accounts can represent serious reputational risks for banks", and, in any case, "they can result in very unpleasant requests from foreign countries. It's strange that financial institutions are approaching this problem so lightly". 

For its part, the Swiss Banking Association stated that the online list of inactive accounts was created without any reference to issues related to tax evasion. "Banks of any country may lose contact with a client", said a representative of this organization. 

Fragmentary information on many dormant accounts makes the task of finding their owners and/or heirs virtually irresolvable. In some cases, the bank does not even know the client's name, let alone the date of birth, citizenship, place of residence or account number.

source: swissinfo.ch






Science & Technology

With China Set To Dominate, 1 Billion Could Be Using 5G By 2023

Deutsche Telekom unveils next gen 5G mobile antennas in Europe

Diamonds are now the new gold

Expert Body Says Driving In A Driverless Car In An Inebriated Condition Or On Drugs Should Be Legalized

SEC’s EDGAR database vulnerable to cyber threats

Research Says The Risk Of Severe Turbulence On Planes Will Increase Due To Climate Change

Barclays and CLS Group aim to replace SWIFT with blockchain

Designing Of Cars Being Done With Hologram Goggles At Ford

The Already Surging Cyber Attacks Are Set To Rise Even Further, Says A Study

Chinese to equip smartphones with OLED displays

World Politics

World & Politics

Scholar Says Political Appointees Not As Important As Financial Ones In China For The Economy

An Expected Change In Brussels Could Be Crucial For The Euro Zone

Destroying People Who Wouldn't Help One Of His Bankrupt Businesses Was All Trump Talked About When He Met Him In 1990s: Branson

Russia Is Worried About America’s Unpredictability

No oil contracts with Iraqi Kurdistan: Iraq’s oil ministry

Donald Trump lost $ 600 million during his presidency

Britain puts its weight behind Europe in the battle between Boeing and Bombardier

EU hopes to keep the Iran nuclear deal afloat