Latvians start filing annual tax return declarations

As of March 1, it is possible to submit annual income declarations to the State Revenue Service (VID). Experts use this time to remind that fraudsters might also hustle. 

Attempts to scam money from people in Latvia increase with each year. Last year, nearly 13 million euros were defrauded from clients of the four largest banks, but fraud worth about 9 million euros was prevented. In January this year, one and a half million euros were defrauded in four major banks, with customers themselves confirming payments.

Figures from the Finance Latvia Association show a high monthly rate of fraudster activity especially in March and April, as criminals take advantage of the time when a large proportion of the population file an annual income declaration to receive tax returns. About 900 thousand euros were defrauded from residents in March last year, and 600 thousand in April.

Fraudsters most often act as representatives of VID, Bank of Latvia, or commercial banks – they call on their behalf, send text messages or e-mails.

The Revenue Service reminds the public that it communicates with its clients exclusively in the Electronic Declaration System (EDS).

"Any other messages - a text message as such, you don't even have to look at the content, if it's a text message, then it's going to be fraudsters trying to get you somewhere. Similarly, if it is an e-mail that invites you to enter some kind of codes or that invites you to provide your information, some kind of accounts - it will all be fraudulent," explains VID spokeswoman Inita Kabanova.

Those who are required to submit income declarations (self-employed persons, business or property owners, those who have been employed abroad, those whose annual income exceeds EUR 78,100, and others) can file tax declaration within three months, up to June 1, but voluntarily, to recover the eligible costs, this can be done for three years, so the VID calls for no rush to make declarations in the first days of March.

The declaration can be submitted electronically, in the Electronic Declaration System (VID EDS). As of 7:30 in the morning of March 1, the login system was already overloaded due to the great interest of residents. 

The head of the Revenue Service Baiba Šmite-Roķe said on X shortly after midnight that over 22,000 residents had filed their tax returns until 1 AM. 

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