Jump to Navigation
Over 30 Years of Experience handling tax controversies & tax disputes

Boston Tax Law Blog

How to request a six-month filing extension from the IRS

Tax day is quickly approaching. This year, you have a few extra days with the April 18 deadline.

Depending on your circumstances you might not have enough time to meet the deadline. Unfiled returns can become a serious liability. While you might not have a return postmarked by April 18, you can avoid the larger of two penalties by requesting a six-month extension.

New Large Business & International tax compliance campaigns

Under continual budgetary pressure and shrinking numbers, the IRS has needed to identify new ways to ensure compliance. Campaigns focusing on certain issues are one way they are planning to stretch limited resources.

How will these new campaigns work? Are traditional audits being replaced? Who is being targeted? What are some of the issues of concern? When do they start? We'll answer these questions in this post.

3 tax tips from Fortune 500 companies

A recent report by the Institute of Taxation and Economic Policy is calling a number of Fortune 500 companies to task. The report alleges that a number of these companies paid nothing in taxes in recent years.

Not a penny.

The companies are pushing back, stating that the report is inaccurate and misleading. One of the companies, General Electric, told Accounting Today that the report was deeply flawed and that in actuality it had paid "$32.9 billion in cash income taxes worldwide, including the U.S." over the last ten years.

How serious is a lien related to “trust fund taxes?”

A recent news headline suggested Ivanka Trump had been hit with a tax lien for non-payment of taxes. This was misleading.

With some investigative work, Forbes unwound who the lien was actually filed against. In January, the New York State Department of State Tax Warrant Notice System filed a tax warrant against Madison Avenue Diamonds LLC T/A Ivanka Trump Fine Jewelry. This company is actually owned by a separate party who is allowed to use the Ivanka Trump brand through a licensing agreement. The approximate $5,000 tax warrant related to unpaid sales taxes.

Who is at the highest risk of an IRS audit?

We know that as budget cuts take their toll, the IRS will be working to squeeze more from each audit. Even as the overall number of audits decreases, wealthy families, successful business owners and those with complicated returns will face increasing scrutiny.

What are some of the clues that a return may raise red flags and draw an audit? Each year, the agency has different priorities. In this post, we discuss several of the 2017 themes.

Pairing tax incentives: Sixth Circuit finds for taxpayers

There are two ways to structure a transaction. One carries a lower tax burden. You decide to use that one. The IRS cannot later force you to use the other one. In the recent case, two brothers combined two tax incentives – one common and one obscure – to limit their taxes.

In protracted tax litigation, the IRS argued that even if the brothers hadn’t necessarily broken the letter of the law, they had violated the spirit of the law. The Tax Court sided with the IRS, but the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed the decision. We’ll summarize how the incentives worked together and the broader application of the ruling.

Responding to a Massachusetts Notice of Insufficient Return

The Massachusetts Department of Revenue often works in coordination with the IRS. An audit of a federal tax return may trigger a DOR Notice of Insufficient Return (NIR).

How long does the DOR have to audit a return? The general rule allows the state three years from the date a state tax return was filed or due, whichever is later. In this post, we discuss how the timing of a filing affects this window. Then we discuss options for responding to a NIR.

Of travel restrictions and back taxes

Travel bans have been in the headlines and certain nationals are seeing their access to the country imperiled. While that ban is on hold pending legal appeals, U.S. citizens may soon find their passports revoked or limited.

The proposal that tied travel to tax collection was a part of the 2015 Fixing America's Surface Transportation (FAST) Act. In our April post last year, we wrote about the details. But it was unclear when the new law would go into effect. Now, the IRS has announced plans to start sending certification letters to the State Department as early as March.

Prison sentence for international tax avoidance scheme

The former professor had invested in a number of startups over the years. Most went bust, but one took off and netted him $80 million when he sold his shares of company stock.

In the year he sold the stock, his first mistake was to under report his income and the gain on the sale. Then he used Swiss Bank accounts and the help of another individual to keep the assets (over $220 million) hidden.

Reporting requirements cut into foreign investments returns

U.S. citizens are taxed on worldwide income. To collect on these taxes, the IRS requires annual reports disclosing foreign financial assets. What triggers the reporting requirements? It varies on the type of asset and amount in an account.

Consider not only the taxes but also reporting fees when reviewing the returns on foreign investments. While they may still make up a component of a diversified portfolio, mistakes can prove costly and lead to significant losses.

Have a Question? Ask an Attorney:

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

Visit Our
Tax Law Website
Contact Information

Levins Tax Law, LLC
1671 Worcester Road, Suite 304
Framingham, MA 01701

Framingham Law Office Map

Levins Tax Law, LLC
38 Newbury Street, 6th Floor
Boston, MA 02116

Boston Law Office Map
By Appointment Only

Phone: 508-435-0118
Toll-Free: 888-333-9501
Fax: 888-333-0291