Saturday 19 October 2019

Court dismisses Quinn children case over tax assessment

(stock photo)
(stock photo)
Shane Phelan

Shane Phelan

The High Court has dismissed proceedings brought against the Revenue Commissioners by three children of the former billionaire Sean Quinn.

Sean Jr, Ciara and Colette Quinn challenged tax assessments raised against them in connection with cash they received from their parents to pay deposits on their homes.

The dispute centred on claims by Revenue that the children received gifts totalling €311,000 between them from Sean and Patricia Quinn but failed to account for capital acquisitions tax. This led to assessments being made against them in 2012.

However, the children insisted the sums were not gifts but interest-free loans which were later repaid.

They wanted the court to quash assessments against them and to rule the Revenue acted beyond its powers.

But following a two-day hearing in the High Court, their judicial review proceedings were dismissed by Ms Justice Miriam O'Regan.

The Revenue Commissioners argued the children were several years out of time in making the application.

The judge refused to grant a time extension and consequently dismissed the case.

It is understood the Quinns are considering an appeal.

They each bought family homes in 2002 or 2003 and, according to court filings, the deposits for the properties were provided by their parents, who at the time were directors of the Quinn Group.

These amounted to €225,095 for Ciara Quinn, €62,051 for Sean Quinn Jr and €24,310 for Colette Quinn.

According to an affidavit filed by Colette Quinn, the siblings repaid the loans in 2007 directly to the Quinn Group after selling shares in a number of Swedish companies.

However, PwC, which was accountant to Quinn Group and Sean and Patricia Quinn, told the Revenue that the sums given towards house purchases were in fact gifts.

The children disputed the accuracy of the PwC letter and claimed it was issued without their consent.

Irish Independent

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