2009 a Record Year for Voluntary Disclosures

According to the Minister of National Revenue Jean-Pierre Blackburn, 2009 has been a banner year for the Voluntary Disclosure Program (VDP). As of December 3, 2009, almost 7,000 voluntary disclosure applications have been filed in 2009. The voluntary disclosures filed in 2009 have disclosed more than $1.6 Billion in income-producing assets, which is about a 50% increase from 2008 figures.

One interesting note is that of the approximately 7,000 applications, only 90 involved assets held in bank accounts with Swiss Bank UBS. Earlier in the year, UBS had been ordered by the IRS to reveal the names of its US account-holders. This statistic is interesting because unlike in the US, where the temporary voluntary disclosure program was very popular with taxpayers with offshore assets (see below), in Canada it appears that the VDP is utilized by a wider spectrum of taxpayers.