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May 2010 Archives

Case in Point: Why You Shouldn't Immediately Give In to the IRS

As discussed in the previous post, one may consider simply surrendering when the IRS comes calling with news of a tax audit and/or informs you that you owe money to the federal government. Just because the IRS says you owe money, however, it does not mean they are right.

5 Mistakes to Avoid if the IRS Comes Calling

If the IRS comes calling, you will probably wonder whether you should simply surrender or put up a fight. While listening to your gut instincts could help, you'll definitely want to think your next moves through before taking action -- or inaction. 

IRS Issues Guidance on Hire Act, Part II

In the previous post, I briefly discussed the basics of the Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment Act (HIRE Act) and the related payroll tax exemption and tax credit. In this post, I'll discuss some of the IRS's new guidance on these issues.

IRS Issues FAQs on HIRE Act Payroll Tax Exemption and Tax Credit

The IRS has recently issued additional guidance on the Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment Act (HIRE Act) and the payroll tax exemption and tax credit that goes along with it. The additional guidance takes the form of a set of FAQs that present answers to questions about eligibility and scope of the exemption, how the act functions with other tax breaks, and issues concerning documentation of a new employees work or unemployment history.

Careful with that Tax Return, IRS Tax Audits are on the Rise

There was a time when the government was more lenient in deciding who would face tax audits and who would be let off the hook. The IRS Reform and Restructuring Act, which was set in place in 1998, shifted focus from tax collection to taxpayer rights. Sadly, no party lasts forever.

When the IRS Comes Calling ... Defending Against a Tax Audit

As the budget deficit grows by trillions of dollars, year after year, the government will be looking for money anywhere they can find it. This means increased tax audits - especially for those who fall into high income brackets. Owners of businesses, both small and large, will also notice increased scrutiny.

The Swiss Get Tough On Offshore Bank Accounts

The IRS's struggle with Swiss bank UBS to get the names and account information of those U.S. citizens purported to be avoiding taxes by way of offshore bank accounts shook the foundation of Swiss banking practices. Long known for their secrecy and protection of client accounts, Swiss officials were faced with adhering to their banking laws and risking international lawsuit - or giving in to outside pressure and revealing the personal information of certain clients.

Potential Prosecution for Offshore Bank Accounts Draws Criticism

A group of prominent criminal tax attorneys has sent a letter to the IRS criticizing it for potentially bringing criminal charges against individuals who voluntarily disclosed offshore bank accounts and other assets as part of the IRS's voluntary disclosure program (VDP).The voluntary disclosure program is designed to allow taxpayers to disclose offshore assets to ensure they are compliant with tax laws and to resolve any outstanding tax liabilities they may have. The incentive for people to participate is the understanding that they will not be criminally prosecuted for tax evasion if they fully comply with the program.The letter from the group of attorneys raises concerns that the IRS may engage in the prosecution of some taxpayers who have not fully complied with the program or who have not made their disclosures in a timely manner. At this time, nearly 15,000 taxpayers may have taken advantage of this program; however, if there appears to be the potential for prosecution, the numbers of people coming forward is sure to decrease dramatically.

Tax Fraud Charges Could be Filed Soon against Madoff's Sons, Brother

The heads aren't done rolling over at Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities. Charges of tax fraud could be on deck for Madoff's brother and two sons, according to individuals close to the ongoing case.