Volume 39 (2011) / Issue 5
German tax law requires retention of records whenever they are 'significant for taxation'. This applies to records written on paper and likewise to digital data. The latter are subject to electronic tax field audits. Tax auditors can require access to such digital data provided they are 'determining for the assessment of tax'. In both contexts - the obligation to retain records and the obligation to grant access to digital data - the taxpayer's duties depend on what is often unprecisely called the tax relevance of the data in question. It is the purpose of the following contribution to explore on the different content of the ambiguous term tax relevance in the different contexts and to explain where this term can be 'explosive' for German electronic tax field audits.
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