|Position of the authority||subordinate agency|
|Supervisory authority (s)||Federal Ministry of Finance|
|Consist||since July 1, 2013|
|Employee||around 500 (as of January 1, 2014)|
The establishment of the financial police as an independent organizational unit corresponds to the international and national mandate to effectively combat and prosecute tax fraud , social fraud and violations of labor , labor market and gaming regulations. The organizational structure and business division of the financial police take into account the principles of economy and efficiency and are based on the changed tax policy and economic framework.
With effect from July 1, 2013, the financial police was set up as a nationwide organizational unit. At the same time, she was assigned the tasks of the Central Coordination Office for the Control of Illegal Employment in accordance with the Aliens Employment Act and the Employment Contract Law Adjustment Act (ZKO); Likewise, the data, information and processing center (DIAC) formerly located at the customs office at Eisenstadt Airport in Vienna has been relocated to the financial police.
The financial police were set up with the aim of increasing the efficiency and speed of reaction in cases of suspected fraud. This restructuring is intended to enable direct control of the financial police taking into account tactical requirements and the flexible use of resources. Taking into account the experience of the Financial Police Office project, technical and service supervision were bundled and placed under a joint management. With the simultaneous creation of an internal nationwide legal service for regulatory affairs, strategic control and technical support were bundled.
The financial police must intervene in particular due to the following laws:
- Tax Administration Organization Act 2010 (AVOG 2010)
- Working Hours Act (AZG)
- Foreigners Employment Act (AuslBG)
- Temporary employment law (AÜG)
- Employment Contract Law Adjustment Act (AVRAG)
- Federal Fiscal Code (BAO)
- According to the provisions of § 89 Paragraph 3 Income Tax Act 1988 (EStG):
- Gambling Act (GSpG)
- Standard Consumption Tax Act (NoVAG)
- Financial Criminal Act (FinStrG)
- Criminal Procedure Code (StPO)
- Criminal Code (StGB)
- Social Fraud Act (SozBeG)
Powers, rights and obligations
The powers of the financial police depend largely on the law, compliance with which is monitored. The financial police, for example, have different powers to check that taxes are paid properly than to check compliance with the Aliens Employment Act.
The financial police officers who intervene have to report official acts to the subject or employer (or their authorized representative), stating the legal basis. The organs of the financial police have to identify themselves with the service card or the service cockade for every field service control act. On request, the ID card must be presented for the service cockade.
The control bodies are required to provide the persons involved in the official act, who are not represented by professional party representatives, with the necessary instructions and legal consequences without being asked. The financial police do not have to refer to the voluntary disclosure that is possible under the Financial Criminal Law for lack of a relevant legal obligation. The Administrative Criminal Law does not provide for voluntary disclosure; this is to be applied to violations - also to be prosecuted by the financial police - that are not tax offenses, for example violations of the Aliens Employment Act.
The result of the control and investigative measures must be recorded and secured using all appropriate evidence (written records, personal sheets, protocols, copies of documents and records, photos, etc.). In the case of surveys with requests for information and inspections, a record must be taken, with a copy being sent to the person providing the information. All control activities are to be documented by the financial police. The authority in charge of the files decides whether to grant access to the files; In administrative criminal proceedings, inspection of the files is to be granted exclusively by the administrative criminal authority.
In the exercise of their professional activity, financial police officers may, in addition to the responsibilities assigned to them in the matric laws, on the basis of the general provisions of the Tax Administration Organization Act ( Paragraph 1 to 3 AVOG):
- Entering land and buildings, business premises, business premises and workplaces;
- Driving on paths, even if this is otherwise prohibited to the general public;
- establish the identity of persons who have reason to believe that they are violating the legal provisions to be enforced by the tax authorities;
- Stop vehicles and other means of transport and check them including the goods carried;
- demand information from everyone about all facts relevant for the fulfillment of the assigned tasks.
The existing access rights (AuslBG, AVRAG, BAO, GSpG) can be exercised regardless of the consent of the property owner, authorized representative or authorized person. According to financial criminal authority or if there is an imminent threat .Abs. 4 AuslBG, the financial police are entitled to arrest people for the Aliens Police. In the event of a financial criminal offense, the financial police are only entitled to arrest under Financial Criminal Law if there is an order from the
In order to maintain order, the control body can refer to the threat of punishment in Security Police Act when performing official acts as an organ of public supervision . In order to enforce a proper official act, a control body can, depending on the subject matter of the procedure under the General Administrative Procedure Act or under and the Federal Tax Code, request the disturbing person to move away or threaten coercive , administrative and willful penalties. Persons who disrupt the official act can also be removed by the control body if they are involved in the control act.
The knowledge that is permissibly obtained in one procedure can also be used as evidence for other procedures, taking into account the applicable procedural law, without the need to change the procedural law or the specific control procedure.
Organizational structure of the financial police
The financial police is a special organizational unit of the Austrian tax and customs administration. It is based in Vienna and has offices throughout Austria.
Head of the financial police
The overall management of the financial police in organizational, personnel, economic and financial responsibility, including the performance of service and technical supervision as well as nationwide control, is the responsibility of the head of the financial police and, if he is prevented from doing so, his permanent deputy . The Central Coordination Office (ZKO), the Data, Information and Processing Center (DIAC) and the Legal Service (JD) report to the Permanent Deputy .
According to the regional organizational structure of the Federal Ministry of Finance, five regional heads of the financial police are deployed; the permanent deputy is also one of the regional heads. All regional heads, the permanent deputy and the head make up the highest management body of the Austrian financial police. In accordance with the monocratic structure of the authorities, however, the head of the financial police is the sole director of the service authority.
The head of the finance police is supported by an organizational team to provide support in organizational, budget and personnel matters. Among other things, this is responsible for the procurement and maintenance of vehicles and special equipment.
Financial police teams
Finance police teams are set up at all tax offices with general duties. Two or more finance police teams may be set up at a tax office, taking into account local economic performance. As a rule, the team comprises nine employees in addition to the team leader.
Special departments of the financial police
- The data, information and processing center ( DIAC ) ensures that the financial police can be reached by other departments, forms the radio center, is a telephone acceptance point and can be reached as a back office for database queries. In addition, data evaluations and the recording of reports from responsible officers and assignments are carried out by the DIAC.
- The central coordination office for the control of illegal employment according to the Aliens Employment Act and the Employment Contract Law Adjustment Act ( ZKO ) takes on the following tasks: keeping the central administrative criminal record, forwarding data to the district administrative authorities and AMS offices for information procedures as well as receiving notifications according to AuslBG and AVRAG.
- The Legal Service supports the teams in technical matters, whereby its technical expertise is of a binding nature. The employees of the legal service can also represent before the courts, in particular the regional administrative courts and the Federal Finance Court, support the finance police team in control activities (technical authority to issue orders), and carry out accompanying and subsequent controls for the purpose of quality assurance. Participation in complaint management is also planned. Finally, in the legal service, basic and specialist training is coordinated with the specialist departments of the BMF, the department of tax offices and the Federal Finance Academy.
Relationship of the financial police to the tax authorities
The financial police are organizationally separated from the tax authorities. The finance policemen are not employees of the tax authorities, however, it is provided by law that the finance policemen have to intervene as organs of the tax authorities (in particular the tax offices). Thus they have the control responsibilities legally assigned to the tax authorities. The facts ascertained by the financial police investigations are processed and transmitted to the responsible tax authorities for further processing. On the other hand, the tax authorities approach the financial police with certain notifications or orders.
Of course, there is also an exchange of information and cooperation with the customs offices and tax investigators.
The anti-fraud coordinators are of great importance in the cooperation between the financial police and tax offices. This function was set up for the first time at the tax offices in 2011, at that time under the name “Finance Police Coordinator”. Due to the reorganization of the financial police and the installation as an independent organizational unit, this function is now referred to as the “anti-fraud coordinator”.
The anti-fraud coordinators are not employees of the financial police, but members of the tax authorities. The financial police team leader does not have the right to issue instructions. The anti-fraud coordinators bundle the knowledge relevant to the fight against fraud as well as the activities of the in-house production teams; They also have the tax office's advertisement management - in close coordination with the criminal case office - together. Your main task is the communication of the tax authority with other authorities, especially the financial police.
Financial police officers usually undergo a two-year training course. This is divided into basic training and the subsequent functional training.
The basic training corresponds to the general, tax law-oriented training for employees of the tax offices. Classroom courses at the Federal Finance Academy as well as practical training phases in the financial police and in all teams of the tax office must be completed. This combination of practice and theory gives the trainees a comprehensive knowledge of the general tax laws and the legal provisions to be enforced by the financial police. The basic training is completed with a service examination.
Functional training follows the basic training . This is about the knowledge and skills specifically required for the financial police service. For this purpose, the trainees have to attend classroom courses at the Federal Finance Academy. The basic and functional training of a finance police officer consists of 850 to 1000 teaching units of theory and 280 to 360 days of practical experience.
Legislation is constantly changing, as are priorities and insights into emerging fraud patterns. Therefore, further training is essential for the organs of the financial police. Courses, workshops and internal training events are initiated, planned and held by the management and the legal service of the financial police. In addition, the financial police make use of educational offers from other departments, in particular the Federal Ministry of the Interior and the Federal Police. In return, the financial police offer the federal police and the district administrative authorities the opportunity to participate in training events in partnership with the authorities, which is widely used.
History of the Financial Police
July 1, 2002 to December 31, 2006 - KIAB as a team at the customs office
With just under 40 employees nationwide - 35 of whom came from transfers from the labor inspectorate - the “Control of illegal foreign employment” (KIAB for short) at the customs offices began on July 1, 2002. The main task was to check compliance with the Aliens Employment Act. As a result, there was a gradual increase in staff. With the closure of the customs guard in 2004, new employees were recruited and new employees were also hired. Starting in 2006, employees from the Post , Telecom and the Armed Forces were transferred to the KIAB as part of the so-called personnel transfer. Due to the increase in personnel, the tasks could also be expanded. This has resulted in the renaming to “Control of illegal employment”.
January 1, 2007 to December 31, 2010 - KIAB as a team of the tax office
At the turn of the year 2006/07, KIAB teams were installed at all Austrian tax offices. The previous KIAB employees of the customs offices were transferred to the tax offices; in addition, internal employees switched to the KIAB. The staff transfer was continued. In 2007 the KIAB was also equipped with uniforms. In the years to come, the competencies and responsibilities of the KIAB were directed towards tax supervisory measures.
January 1, 2011 to June 30, 2013 - Finance Police as a team of the tax office
With the amendment to the AVOG on January 1, 2011, the financial police came into being. If at first glance it was a mere renaming of the KIAB - the organizational, internal agency position as a team of a tax office remained unchanged for the time being - the powers in the field of tax supervisory measures have been significantly strengthened by the new § 12 AVOG. The control of the financial police activities remained unchanged, primarily by the respective tax offices as service authorities in accordance with local needs. There was no permanent supra-regional or nationwide control or management of the financial police.
June 2011 - Establishment of the financial police department in the Federal Ministry of Finance
In June 2011, the Financial Police Department was launched in the Federal Ministry of Finance. Affiliated to Section IV and directly subordinate to Section Head Wolfgang Nolz, the Financial Police Department was now responsible for the nationwide orientation, control and focus of the Financial Police. The financial police department had direct authority to issue instructions to the financial police coordinators established in July 2011. This did not change anything about the service authority properties of the tax offices. Through the work of the Financial Police, the cross-departmental cooperation of the financial police teams was streamlined. Large-scale operations and nationwide priorities were coordinated and very good results were achieved.
July 1, 2013 - The financial police as an independent organizational unit
The evaluation of the activities of the financial police department in the Federal Ministry of Finance led to the decision of the Federal Minister of Finance Maria Fekter in February 2013 to combine the financial police in a nationwide organizational unit. According to General Secretary Hans-Georg Kramer, CFP, “the establishment of a separate service authority was the logical further development of the Financial Police Department project. The uniform nationwide control will further increase the efficiency of our fraud prevention. ”The reorganization of the finance police was designed and planned in just four months by a 40-person project team and was finally implemented on July 1, 2013.
The financial police usually perform field work in uniform . If the mission requires it, the financial police can intervene in plain clothes. The uniforms of the financial police differ from those of the officers of the operational customs inspection only in the lettering. The uniform color of the Federal Ministry of Finance is gray, combined with the red BMF logo and black applications.
The standard adjustment consists of:
- Combat jacket
- Shirt (long / short sleeve)
- Combat trousers with leather belt
- Multipurpose harness
- Combat boots
In addition, the following types of clothing are used depending on the weather and intended use:
- Woolen hood
- Plate cap for traffic service
- Polo shirt (long / short sleeve)
- Fleece jacket
- sleeveless vest
- Rain jacket and pants
- Safety vest
- Canvas shoes
The representation Clothing (representation uniform) for executives consists of:
- Plate cap
- Long sleeve shirt
Finally, the following special clothing is planned:
- Hard hat
- Safety shoes
- Disposable overalls and hoods
- Work coat
- Functional gloves
The organs of the financial police have a service card which contains the inscription “Service ID Republic of Austria”, the photo of the employee, the authority designation “Finanzpolizei”, the service number of the employee and the period of validity on the front . In addition, the note "Organ of the tax authority, § 12 AVOG, § 144 BAO" is appropriate. Upon successful completion of the basic training, each financial police officer receives an additional cockade ( badge ). This bears the federal coat of arms and the inscription "Republic of Austria BMF".
The financial police have a partially labeled fleet of different vehicles. In addition to office buses, cars and four-wheel drive vehicles are also in use. The vehicles of the financial police are (partially) equipped with flashing lights and a tone horn as well as stop bars in order to be prepared for use in road traffic. If necessary, the office buses can be marked with the words “Finanzpolizei” on the flanks of the vehicle using magnetic boards. In addition, every financial police team has stopping trowels and folding signals “Attention Financial Police”, which are used during operations in road traffic.
All vehicles of the tax and customs administration, including those of the financial police, have official license plates with the abbreviation “FV” (for financial administration), the federal coat of arms and a three-digit number.
- Website of the Federal Ministry of Finance
- Duties and taxes: Finanzpolizei (PDF), brochure from the Austrian Chamber of Commerce
- § 10b of the Ordinance for the Implementation of the Tax Administration Organization Act 2010 (AVOG 2010 - DV) in the version of the amendment in Federal Law Gazette II No. 110/2013
- Tasks of the financial police on the website of the Federal Ministry of Finance, accessed on February 16, 2014
- Herbert Houf: Focal Point Financial Police: What Is It? What can she do? What is she allowed to do? in PerSaldo - The ÖGWT-Magazin für Wirtschaftstreuhandberufe - 2/2011 ( Page no longer available , search in web archives ) Info: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (PDF; 2.4 MB), published by the Austrian Association of Public Accountants.
- Information page on the operational control by the financial police ( memento of the original of April 21, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and not yet checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. of the Austrian Chamber of Commerce, accessed on February 16, 2014
- Escalation in the battle for tax money , report in the Kleine Zeitung of May 24, 2013, accessed on April 30, 2020
- The financial police as an organ of the tax authorities on the website of the Austrian Chamber of Commerce, accessed on February 16, 2014
- List of departments ( page no longer available , search in web archives ) Info: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (PDF) on the website of the Federal Ministry of Finance, accessed on February 16, 2014
- The financial police - more security and fairness ( page no longer available , search in web archives ) Info: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (PDF), information folder of the Federal Ministry of Finance, accessed on February 16, 2014
- Information and contact points on the website of the Federal Ministry of Finance, accessed on February 16, 2014