For a company whose official business slogan was, up until recently, Don t be wicked (changed by the more anodyne Do the best thing), Google sure gets into plenty of trouble for its tax practices. The tech behemoth s latest tussle with the law just escalated in France, where lots of authorities robbed Google s Paris head office early Tuesday morning, Reuters reports, as part of an ongoing query into the company s tax practices that was released in June of in 2014.

Google s E.U. headquarters are based in Dublin, where companies take pleasure in an extremely low corporate tax rate. What French district attorneys want to accomplish with the raid is to prove that Google which was just recently re-structured as a subsidiary of its brand-new moms and dad company, Alphabet houses enough of its operation in France that it must be required to pay higher taxes in France. The examination aims to validate whether Google Ireland Ltd. has a permanent base in France and if, by not stating parts of its activities performed in France, it failed its fiscal commitments, consisting of on business tax and value included tax, the district attorney’s office said in a statement to Reuters.

For comparisons sake, the business tax rate in France for the 2015 fiscal year was 34.4 percent more than two times Ireland s rate of 12.5 percent. That’s a big chunk of modification that Alphabet executive chairman Eric Schmidt and company are saving by being based in Dublin. The French government is supposedly pursuing the tech company for 1.6 billion euros ($1.8 billion) in back taxes.

In an email to Reuters, a Google representative said that the company is complying with the authorities to answer their questions. But Google taking heat for its slick tax maneuvering is absolutely nothing brand-new. At the beginning of the year, Alphabet agreed to pay 130 million (about $185 million at the time of the settlement) in back taxes to the British government. In 2014 alone, the business behemoth supposedly paid less than 1 percent in taxes on approximately $13 billion in earnings it transferred to Bermuda with a method called a double Irish with a Dutch sandwich, which involves routing income through both Irish and Dutch subsidiaries to lessen taxes.

Of course, Google isn’t alone in taking advantage of different countries tax codes. It is also no coincidence that innovation companies grace headlines more frequently than others when it comes to making use of tax codes. Numerous multinational companies keep cash reserves offshore to avoid paying U.S. taxes if those holdings are repatriated. While Google’s efforts to reduce its tax costs are not always unlawful, European authorities have grown increasingly intolerant of corporations preventing paying their reasonable share to the nations where they work. Tuesday s raid in Paris is simply the latest in a broadening crackdown abroad on doubtful tax maneuvers as the European Union transfers to close tax-code loopholes. Ireland, for example, actually closed down the tax shelter behind the double Irish loophole in 2015, but companies that were already delighting in the break can continue to do so up until 2020.


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For a company whose official business slogan was, up until recently, Don t be wicked (changed by the more anodyne Do the best thing), Google sure gets into plenty of trouble for its tax practices.

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