Based on a tip from one of our readers from the Coastal region, we reviewed the data of six law firms, which are among the largest in Slovenia. The reader found that there is a real possibility of the Law Firm Čeferin evading taxes. She proved this with the example of the annual income of the Law Firm Čeferin and their profit tax. In 2015, the Čeferins reported 2.5 million euros in revenue, but showed only 6 thousand euros in profit tax. Their iprofit tax only got higher in 2018, when it grew by 500 percent, despite the fact that their revenues in 2018 only increased by 10 percent. We later learned that this is an old business practice of the largest law firm in Slovenia, which requires payment in cash for most of its services. This is supposedly done in the collection of advances from their customers, whose cases they later do not actually take on, supposedly due to conflict of interests. The aggrieved party, however, pays at least a thousand euros in cash. In this creative way, the Law Firm Čeferin lowered its annual budget by hundreds of thousands of euros. Some also pointed out that allegedly, most law firms in Slovenia (between 30 and 60 percent) operate in a similar manner.
Our editorial office received an anonymous letter from a reader from Nova Gorica. She thanked us for doing the brave work we did in revealing the mistakes of the Law Firm Čeferin. She wrote that this is a law firm that has been systematically evading paying taxes for decades now. They manage to get away with it by charging most of their services in cash, both from their poor, as well as their very wealthy clients.
Despite the fact that they have the largest number of lawyers, their official income is lower than half of the average income of other law firms. They supposedly also do not report cash transactions. She supported her claims with a chart showing their annual revenues, from the Agency of the Republic of Slovenia for Public Legal Records and Related Services (Agencija Republike Slovenije za javnopravne evidence in storitve – AJPES). It shows that they have half the revenue of the offices with the same number of employees or the same revenue as offices that are way smaller.
In 2015, Law Firm Čeferin reported 2.5 million euros in revenue, but showed only 6 thousand euros in profit tax. Their profit tax only got higher in 2018, when it grew by 500 percent, despite the fact that their revenues in 2018 only increased by 10 percent.