Tax Crimes Archives

Town justice pleads guilty to tax evasion

The federal government recently accused a town justice from New York of tax evasion. Although out of New York, the case provides lessons for those facing similar charges anywhere in the country as the charges are related to federal tax crimes. The criminal charges are the result of evidence that allegedly shows the town justice failed to report “hundreds of thousands of dollars in income taxes” from 2005 through 2015. 

The IRS's use of data analytics to combat tax evasion

The IRS understands that the tax code is long and confusing. Therefore, the agency is willing to cut people slack if they make an honest mistake on their taxes. This reasonable attempt to comply with tax code is not a crime but referred to as negligence. However, tax evasion - willfully not paying a tax liability - is illegal. People try to avoid paying taxes by underreporting or omitting income, claiming false deductions and credits, concealing assets or improperly claiming tax credits or exemptions.

FBI Investigating Alleged Payroll Fraud Leaving Employees Without Wages and Unpaid Tax Withholding

Various news outlets are reporting an ongoing FBI investigation of alleged payroll fraud by a New York-based payroll services provider, MyPayrollHR, that abruptly shut down in upstate New York earlier this month. Thousands of employees' accounts have been drained and up to $35 million dollars, if $9 million of unpaid tax withholding is included, has disappeared. 

Does willful v. non-willful matter when it comes to tax crimes?

Getting accused of a tax crime is a serious matter. The allegations can range from a relatively minor discrepancy that results in a financial penalty to major errors that lead to prison time. One of the key factors that will determine the severity of the allegations is whether the government claims the crime was willful.

Imminent Deadline for VA Taxpayers to Qualify for Tax Relief Refund

On June 18, 2019, Virginia Governor Northam and the Virginia Department of Taxation released an important reminder to taxpayers, who still haven't filed individual income taxes, that returns must filed by midnight on July 1, 2019, to qualify for the Tax Relief Refund. Virginia implemented the Tax Relief Refund in response to the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Per the Tax Relief Refund, individual filers could receive up to $110, while married couples filing joint returns could receive up to $220. The release emphasized that the refund must not exceed the taxpayer's liability, and checks must be mailed out by Oct. 15, 2019. Finally, the release indicated some factors that can reduce the tax relief refund, including: (1) the Virginia Department of Taxation will withhold all or part of the refund and apply it to the taxpayer's outstanding Virginia state tax liabilities, and (2) the Virginia Department of Taxation will withhold all or part of the refund to help pay a taxpayer's delinquent liabilities with the Virginia local governments, courts or other state agencies, or the IRS.

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