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The importance of credibility in tax audits and appeals: Part 1


The perceived credibility of a taxpayer’s evidence is nearly always critical to the outcome of a tax dispute, whether it is the Commissioner’s perception of the taxpayer’s evidence following an audit, or the perception of a court or tribunal in an appeal. Perceptions of credibility are often affected by the absence or (in)adequacy of critical records, and inconsistencies between contemporaneous records and subsequent statements made in interviews, examinations, audit responses, objections, issues papers and witness statements. The Commissioner’s information-gathering powers provide ample opportunity to unearth any inconsistencies.

The two parts of this article consider the importance of a taxpayer’s credibility in tax audits and appeals in the context of the taxpayer’s evidential burden and the standard of proof, how credibility is assessed by a court or tribunal, and (in part 2) the practical considerations for both taxpayers and the Commissioner of Taxation in dealing with issues in audit and preparing for an appeal

Author profile

Christopher Peadon FTI
Chris is a Barrister at New Chambers and has practised at the NSW Bar since 2011. He previously worked as a solicitor for a decade. He regularly advises and appears for taxpayers and the Commissioner. - Current at 16 June 2022
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