Swiss Government Allows its Banks to Release Account Holder Information to IRS

The Swiss government announced Wednesday that it would allow Swiss Banks to release the names and information of US accountholders to the US government, which normally would constitute a violation of Swiss law.  The information release would be part of an offer by the US to Swiss Banks to hand over US accountholder information and pay a fine in order to avoid the threat of indictment of the Swiss Banks by the US.   American accountholders whose information is released to the US who have not already taken advantage of voluntary compliance are likely to face stiff penalties, including the potential for criminal tax evasion charges.