What is the penalty for improper bookkeeping of revenues and expenses?


Taxpayers who keep a Tax Book of Income and Expenses are obliged to keep it in a reliable and non-defective manner. In addition, entries in it must be made in Polish and in Polish currency in a careful, legible and permanent manner, based on correct and reliable evidence. Read the article and find out what the penalty is for improper bookkeeping!

The book is defective when ...

The tax book of revenues and expenditures is considered defective if it is not kept in accordance with the provisions of the regulation and with explanations to the book model.

The book is unreliable when ....

As is clear from par. 11 of the Regulation of the Code of Competition and Consumer Protection is considered unreliable if the entries made therein do not reflect the actual state of affairs.

The book is also considered unreliable in the case of no entries or incorrect entries regarding tax deductible costs.

On the other hand, a book is considered reliable when:

  • the unwritten or incorrectly entered amounts of revenue do not exceed a total of 0.5% of the revenue shown in the book for a given tax year or revenue shown in the tax year until the date on which the head of the tax office or the tax inspection authority found these errors, or
  • the lack of appropriate entries is related to an accident or random event that prevented the taxpayer from keeping the book, or
  • errors resulted in an increase in the amount of the tax base, with the exception of errors consisting in failure to show or understating the cost of purchasing basic materials, commercial goods and labor costs, or
  • the taxpayer completed the entries or corrected incorrect entries in the book before the commencement of the inspection by the head of the tax office or by the tax inspection authority, or
  • incorrect entries are the result of an obvious mistake, and the taxpayer has accounting evidence that meets the conditions referred to in § 12 section 3.

So what is the risk of an entrepreneur when he keeps the book improperly?

Defective or unreliable means that the tax authority does not reconsider such books as evidence. However, if the book is kept incorrectly but reliably, and the revealed defects are in the light of the case, then the KPiR may be considered evidence.

The declaration of unreliability of the book by the tax authority results in its rejection. It is a qualified act pursuant to Art. 61 § 1 of the Fiscal Penal Code as a fiscal offense and is punishable by a fine of up to 240 daily rates. It is worth emphasizing that the rejection of the KPiR may cause the tax authority to determine the tax base of the taxpayer by estimating what may be unfavorable for him.

On the other hand, defective bookkeeping is punishable by a fine for a fiscal offense, therefore the result of defective bookkeeping is much less severe for the taxpayer than in the case of unreliable bookkeeping.