Because she’s worth it.
Weekly magazine, Marianne, claims to have access to tax documents showing that France’s richest woman and heiress to the L’Oréal fortune, Liliane Bettencourt, best known for her company’s advertising slogan ‘Because I’m worth it’, owes around 30 million euros to the French tax authorities. Per the documents, Bettencourt owes roughly 11.3 million euros in income tax from 2006-2007, as well as 17.6 million in French wealth tax from 2004-2007. A total of nearly 30 million euros (That is over $43.2 million in USD).
Tapes provided by her butler apparently revealed “tax evasion” tactics including Swiss bank accounts and a tax haven on the Island Arros, ultimately undervaluing her properties to reduce her French wealth tax.
So if Bettencourt were a US citizen? To avoid criminal prosecution, she would first be required to come forward and reveal all aspects of her foreign bank accounts by filing an FBAR (Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts), as well as submit a 433-A financial statement itemizing her assets and income. From there, a repayment plan would be created to pay off the tax debt and the millions accumulated in penalties and interest.
Having a tax debt is anything but glamorous. We’re not sure if Bettencourt has hired a French tax attorney to help tackle the debt, but we think it would be well ‘worth it’.
Sign up for our newsletter and be the first to find out when exciting IRS news happens. Yes, exciting. We're really into taxes.