Momskarruseller: Revisors rolle

Anita Holm Thorstensen & Karina Skovgaard Svane

Student thesis: Master thesis


VAT constitutes a major source of revenue for the Danish state1, which is why it is essential to continuously control and monitor this area and to eliminate VAT fraud. In recent years, there have been several cases concerning VAT carousel fraud involving considerable amounts of money, in Denmark as well as in the EU. Basically, there are four parties which can potentially detect VAT carousel fraud. These are SKAT (the Danish tax authorities), the Public Prosecutor for Serious Economic Crime, the company which unintentionally becomes part of the VAT carousel (represented by the VAT expert) and the auditor (represented by FSR – Danish Auditors and the authors). As the authors of this thesis have a background in auditing, the thesis focuses on the perspective of the auditor. The aim of this thesis is therefore to examine whether the auditor can counter the problem of VAT carousels. To answer this question, it has been necessary to look at the theory on the VAT system as well as former cases concerning VAT carousel fraud. The contact of the auditor with the companies in the VAT carousels has been examined in order to identify the current duties of the auditor, and to determine whether a change in regulations can counter VAT carousels. These duties were discussed with selected stakeholders in the field, namely SKAT, the Public Prosecutor for Serious Economic Crime, a VAT expert and FSR – Danish Auditors, and a number of danger signals were identified at the same time. These danger signals have been reviewed in order to determine how the auditor should react to them in accordance with the accounting standards. It has been interesting to learn that SKAT, the Public Prosecutor for Serious Economic Crime and the VAT expert have very different views as to how important a role the auditor can play in countering VAT carousels. SKAT believes that the auditor should do a lot more to counter VAT carousel fraud, whereas the Public Prosecutor for Serious Economic Crime and the VAT expert do not think that the auditor can do much in this regard. More specifically, the VAT expert believe that SKAT in particular is in a position to counter VAT carousel fraud. It has therefore been examined how many times SKAT has filed a complaint against the auditor with Revisornævnet (the Danish accounting practices board). This was done in three cases concerning VAT fraud. However, none of the complaints were upheld.

EducationsMSc in Auditing, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2013
Number of pages218