Currency Transaction Reports and Associated Violations

Wondering if a certain amount of money that is deposited or withdrawn in one transaction will pique the interest of the IRS or any federal law enforcement agency? The answer is yes, and the magic number here is more than $10,000. Customers of banks or other financial institutions will automatically trigger a Currency Transaction Report (CTR) for transactions that go above this threshold. A report will be sent to the Read More

An Overview of Innocent Spouse Relief

When the IRS begins pursuing unpaid taxes and imposes penalties on an individual or business, it will not let up easily. There are, however, exceptions filers may use to avoid paying back taxes, interest, and penalties, and one of those ways is by applying for Innocent Spouse Relief. You may be eligible for this form of tax relief if you and your spouse (or ex-spouse) filed a joint tax return.  Four-Part Read More

What is a First Time Tax Penalty Abatement?

If the IRS has assessed penalties for your failure to file or failure to pay taxes, you might be eligible for a first-time tax abatement (FTA) waiver. You may request a waiver for penalties related to your personal taxes, or you may also apply for an FTA for penalties related to your business. In addition to the failure-to-pay and failure-to-file penalties, you may request an FTA for your business for penalties Read More

Explaining Entrapment

Many people are at least somewhat familiar with the entrapment defense, which entails an admission that a criminal defendant engaged in a crime but was essentially forced to by a police officer or other government agent. Sting operations, popularized by certain T.V. true-crime programs, have also pushed the concept of entrapment more into mainstream legal discussions. At its core, entrapment is a recognized, Read More

Understanding the Difference Between Tax Avoidance and Tax Evasion

The Internal Revenue Service maintains the country’s tax system, which functions based on voluntary compliance from taxpayers. No one from the IRS will come to your house and arrest you on April 16 if you did not file your taxes by the previous day’s deadline. If you continue that pattern of not complying with the tax law, and the government is able to prove that such conduct was willful, then it is a criminal Read More

Making a Deal: 3 Types of Plea Bargains

If you’ve decided to enter into a plea bargain with your criminal case, you have hopefully arrived at your decision after carefully scrutinizing the situation with an experienced attorney. Depending on your situation, you will want to consider all types of plea bargains in order to arrive at the optimal outcome for your case.  There is a fundamental difference between plea agreements in state and federal court. The Read More

Expatriation Explained

The IRS has recently introduced a new program designed to streamline the process for US citizens who have relinquished their citizenship (or will soon) to get relief from tax-related obligations. This new program was first introduced on September 6th, 2019 and is known as “The Relief Procedures for Certain Former Citizens.” While certainly not for everyone, those who have (or would be willing to) relinquish their US Read More

4 Reasons to Plead No Contest

When it comes to court hearings, most people are very familiar with the “Guilty” and “Not Guilty” plea options. A third option, however, is more confusing for many people. Pleading “No Contest” is quite common in many types of cases and comes with certain benefits. The plea of no contest comes from the Latin phrase nolo contendere, which translates to “I do not wish to contest.” From a legal perspective, you are Read More

Understanding Post OVDP Compliance

While the IRS has a (well-earned) reputation for taking a hard stance on those who fail to properly file their taxes, they also work hard to help people get back into compliance if they are willing. The Large Business and International Division (LB&I) area of the IRS has recently announced the approval of six new compliance campaigns set up specifically to help people in these difficult situations. One of the Read More

Own Cryptocurrency? The IRS Just Released a Warning on How They Will Handle It

As Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies continue to gain popularity, countries around the world are trying to figure out how to best handle them. One of the biggest challenges is determining how this new asset class will be treated when it comes to taxes. This concern is on the minds of both government officials, and the millions of people who buy, sell, or use cryptocurrencies of any kind. While there are still many Read More