Bulgaria Penal Code Includes Tough Measures against Insurance Infringement

Newly-adopted amendments to the Penal Code are now enforcing harsh measures targeting concealment of social insurance contributions.

Among the heaviest penalties are imprisonment from two to eight years and confiscation of property.

The heaviest penalty will apply in cases of concealment of contributions that amount to more than BGN 12 000.

An imprisonment of five years and a fine of BGN 2000 await those that conceal contributions worth more than BGN 3000.

According to the adopted amendments, penalties will be applied for the evasion of compulsory contributions for the State Social Insurance or health insurance.

Acts that breach the law include the declaration of insurable earnings lower than their real amount, failure to submit declaration, the submission of false declaration, the destroying or concealment of accounting documents and registers.

Experts say changes make concealment of social insurance tantamount to tax evasion under the Penal Code.

Trade unions had long called for the amendments, adding they would bring some BGN 150 to 200 M into health and social insurance.

Contrary to employers’ demands, however, the fresh legislation does not include sanctions against workers who consent to being insured at lower earnings than their de-facto salary.

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