Tax Litigation Law Office of Scott Kauffman
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October 2012 Archives

How does the IRS assess taxes on unfiled business returns?

It is very important for businesses in Southern California to file their tax returns accurately and on time with the Internal Revenue Service. If businesses have an obligation to file and fail to do so, and if the IRS is unsuccessful in procuring the return, the agency is authorized by statute to prepare returns and assess taxes against businesses on the basis of those returns.

Identity thieves mimic IRS to capture taxpayer information

Taxpayers in Southern California may dread receiving communications from the Internal Revenue Service because they often contain the announcement of an audit or a tax deficiency. But people here and around the country have a new reason to be wary of potential communications from the IRS: identity theft.

What happens when the IRS audits my income tax return?

The American Law Institute recently held a CLE conference, short for continuing legal education, at which a couple of Internal Revenue Service employees spoke. The CLE dealt primarily with audits of tax returns and the process that the IRS uses to examine taxpayers' information.

How can I get relief from failure to pay and file tax penalties?

Taxpayers in Southern California can face substantial penalties when they do not meet deadlines imposed by the Internal Revenue Service. There is a penalty for failing to file a tax return in a timely manner, and there is a penalty for failing to pay the tax owed on time. The longer a taxpayer waits beyond the due date to file a return or pay tax, the more these penalties grow. If not dealt with, they can reach 25 percent of the unpaid taxes.

Tax Court dismisses whistleblower's case against IRS

Last month, we posted about the record-setting $104 million award given to a whistleblower for providing detailed information about UBS's offshore tax evasion practices. Other whistleblowers in California and around the country may be tempted to come forward and report alleged instances of criminal tax activity in the hopes that they too could earn their own, albeit smaller, reward.

Tax Court sees fault in handling of couple's offer in compromise

An offer in compromise is one method for taxpayers in California to pay delinquent tax debts to the Internal Revenue Service. The IRS will accept an OIC on a handful of grounds, including doubt as to collectability, where the taxpayer does not have the income or assets to satisfy the debt. Because an OIC settles the tax liability for less than the total amount owed, the IRS wants to make absolutely sure that the taxpayer cannot pay the debt in full.

IRS announces new disclosure program for offshore accounts

The Internal Revenue Service's inquiry into offshore tax evasion is a multi-pronged effort. While the IRS and the Department of Justice apply pressure to foreign governments and financial institutions, the IRS is also creating initiatives for U.S. taxpayers--living here in California or residing abroad--to come back into compliance with reporting requirements.

Can the IRS contact me after I get representation in a tax case?

Taxpayers in Southern California who are the subject of an inquiry by the Internal Revenue Service have the right to retain the services of an experienced tax professional to represent them in pending matters with the agency. Once the representative properly informs the IRS that he or she is acting on behalf of the taxpayer under investigation, the IRS must respect that relationship and deal with the representative directly.

TIGTA report finds some federal agencies with payroll tax debts

Part of running a business in Southern California is meeting one's payroll tax obligations to the Internal Revenue Service. When times are tough, the money may not be there to satisfy one's tax bill, and that is when the IRS may take action. At first, the agency may assess penalties and interest against the debt owed, which can grow the balance substantially.