Overview of tax law decisions of the Swiss Federal Supreme Court published between August 28 - September 3, 2023:

  • Judgments of August 9, 2023 (2C_78/2022 and 2C_79/2022): Automatic Exchange of Information (MCAA / DTA Saudi Arabia): In particular, it had to be clarified whether the lower court, taking into account the circumstances of the individual case, had rightly assumed that the disputed exchange of information with Saudi Arabia did not constitute an unreasonable disadvantage for the complainant due to the lack of guarantees under the rule of law. The lower court assessed the evidence submitted by the complainant and concluded that it was not suitable to show, even in the area of prima facie evidence, that the automatic exchange of information would result in a concrete unreasonable disadvantage for the complainant. The complainant disputes this assessment, but confines itself to contrasting its own interpretation of the submitted elements with that of the lower court judges in an appellative manner, without showing in what way the latter had proceeded arbitrarily; dismissal of the appeal.
  • Judgment of 16 August 2023 (9C_673/2022): Tax valuation of real estate (Vaud); The dispute concerns the tax valuation of parcels of land in which the complainant acquired ownership on August 31, 2018. In this context, she challenges the price of CHF 2,200.00 per square meter adopted by the competent department at the Tax Administration and confirmed by the Cantonal Court to determine the market value. In her opinion, this market value is too high. The appellant further submits that it was not able to verify whether the compared parcels had the same characteristics as its own and whether the comparative prices were reasonable. The Federal Supreme Court refers to the answer of the Cantonal Court, according to which it would have been possible to locate the other parcels by means of the digital map switch and to determine and compare certain characteristics, in particular their slope and the extent of the building rights. A neighboring comparable parcel was sold in 2021 at a price of CHF 2,433 per square meter, although the building rights on the complainant's parcels are much more extensive. Dismissal of the taxpayer's appeal.
  • Judgment of 16 August 2023 (9C_671/2022): State and municipal taxes (Fribourg) and direct federal tax 2017; In the present case, the debt of CHF 611,164, which the complainant settled, was originally incurred by the taxpayer's father in 2009 in the context of his self-employed activity as a pig trader vis-à-vis C.. This debt is therefore not attributable to any business relationship between C. and the taxpayer. First, in agreement with the Cantonal Court, it should be noted that this debt was recorded by the father in his final inventory in 2011. Moreover, the appellant never took over the assets and liabilities - including this debt - of his father's pig trading business. Although the latter recorded the debt in his own accounts, the tax correction norm enshrined in Art. 58 para. 1 subpara. b DBG requires the denial of the deduction. The cantonal court rightly assumed that the disputed debt was not business-related and had no connection with the self-employed agricultural activity. Dismissal of the taxpayer's appeal.
  • Judgment of 21 August 2023 (9C_667/2022): State and municipal taxes (Valais) and direct federal tax 2019: The lower court confirmed the objection ruling and qualified the resale of 333,332 shares of D.-AG - which the complainant had acquired on January 9, 2019 for a price of CHF 16,666.60 - to the company E. on May 21, 2019 for an amount of CHF 1,326,666.00 (in the form of an exchange of shares) as taxable income from self-employment. It essentially considered that, given the sequence of events, this transaction appeared to be planned and not accidental, as the complainant claimed, since he had acquired the shares on January 9, 2019 at the nominal price in order to resell them four months later, i.e. on May 21, 2019, at a hundred times the nominal price. The considerations of the lower court are not arbitrary. Dismissal of the taxpayer's appeal.

Decisions are listed chronologically by publication date.