Paul L. Caron
Dean


Thursday, March 12, 2015

Tax Official Dies in Office, Co-Workers Don't Notice for Two Days

BBC News, Finns Miss Death in Tax Office:

A tax office official in Finland who died at his desk was not found by his colleagues for two days.

The man in his 60s died last Tuesday while checking tax returns, but no-one realised he was dead until Thursday.

The head of personnel at the office in the Finnish capital, Helsinki, said the man's closest colleagues had been out at meetings when he died. ...

According to the Finnish tabloid newspaper Ilta-Sanomat on Monday, co-workers had assumed the dead man - a tax auditor - was silently poring over returns.

(Hat Tip: Len Fuld.)

https://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2015/03/tax-official-dies-in-office-.html

Tax | Permalink

Comments

It's like the first episode of L.A. Law in which a tax partner was found dead at his desk with his fingers gripping a tax guide. ... This says something about the hygiene of Finns if it took them two days to notice the smell, and it really says something about the efficiency of government to take two days to notice that someone wasn't working.

Posted by: Woody | Mar 12, 2015 11:14:54 AM

"According to the Finnish tabloid newspaper Ilta-Sanomat on Monday, co-workers had assumed the dead man - a tax auditor - was silently poring over returns."

Ah, the famous Finnish reserve...

Posted by: Unemployed Northeastern | Mar 12, 2015 12:32:40 PM

Strangely similar to this story: http://www.snopes.com/horrors/gruesome/fivedays.asp

Posted by: Dolores W. Gregory | Mar 12, 2015 2:08:42 PM

Too bad they didn't all just pass away. Every last stinking one of them. Who would miss them. This includes the extortionists at the IRS.

Posted by: BriarPatch | Mar 12, 2015 2:55:21 PM

TWO DAYS! THAT'S REMARKABLY FAST WORK FOR GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES!

Posted by: anon | Mar 12, 2015 5:16:19 PM

Wait a minute…wasn’t there a similar scene in David Foster Wallace’s unfinished novel, The Pale King, where an IRS employee died at his desk and no one noticed? Life imitating art.

Posted by: Eddy from Accounting | Mar 13, 2015 5:05:17 AM

The rest of the story. They dropped the body off at the Red Cross. Where a worker handling the body suddenly became pregnant.

Posted by: Tom Fituugen | Mar 13, 2015 5:57:11 AM

"...and it really says something about the efficiency of government to take two days to notice that someone wasn't working."

A classmate's first job out of college (MS Statistics) was to work on revising a survey, to see what information would be lost moving from 3/year to 2/year. I didn't ask, but I'll bet that that job had long periods of time when others might not have known that he wasn't working.

Now, the dead thing.....

Posted by: Barry | Mar 13, 2015 8:31:07 AM

He will get paid for the two extra days of work, correct?

Posted by: Willy | Mar 13, 2015 12:15:37 PM

At least he died doing what he loved...

Posted by: Nick | Mar 13, 2015 1:23:12 PM

I think this is a goof-up at the BBC - the quote from "Anita Wickstroem, director of the Helsinki tax office" is identical to one that appears in a NYT article from 2004.

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/01/20/world/world-briefing-europe-finland-rigor-mortis-on-the-job.html

Posted by: Sarah | Mar 13, 2015 2:51:02 PM

Nick Nolte movie "Teachers".

Posted by: askeptic | Mar 13, 2015 3:39:16 PM