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Over 30 Years of Experience handling tax controversies & tax disputes

November 2012 Archives

Foreign bank accounts to be more transparent under new law

A new banking law known as the Foreign Account Tax Compliance act, or FACTA, is set to bring closer scrutiny on people in Massachusetts and elsewhere around the country who have significant assets with financial institutions outside the U.S. The law could serve to ensnare more people with tax evasion charges.

Amesbury man charged with multiple counts of tax evasion

A man who is charged with 22 counts of tax evasion over a period of six years is the president and treasurer of a landscaping company in Amesbury, Massachusetts. He has held his position with the company since 1997. The state attorney general has accused the man of failing to pay over $445,000 in employer contributions that the business was legally bound to pay. This amount includes interest and amounts due to the unemployment trust fund. The nonpayment of taxes allegedly occurred between October 2006 and January of this year. The workers were being paid, and the business was operating at the time, signifying the business owner's legal responsibility to pay employer contributions to the government. Workers who were no longer employed by the company collected more than $595,000 in unemployment wages in spite of the company's failure to pay in the required $445,000 in contributions.

Tax controversy regarding gay couples could be on horizon

A tax controversy may have arisen after a federal appeals court issued a decision in regard to the Defense of Marriage Act, known as DOMA. The Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in New York declared that the law is unconstitutional. Another federal appeals court made the same conclusion prior to New York's decision. The United States Supreme Court may be called on to weigh in on the constitutionality of the act in the future. The current federal tax code does not recognize gay marriage. However, if the Supreme Court strikes down the constitutionality of DOMA, gay couples who are legally married could then file a claim for a refund of federal tax overpayments. Six states currently recognize same-sex marriage, including Massachusetts. Gay-rights activists and accountants have recommended that same-sex couples should file a protective refund claim. This claim goes to the Internal Revenue Service. This strategy will allow couples to receive a larger refund if the U.S. Supreme Court strikes down DOMA.

Former government worker pleads to tax-related crimes

An employee who once worked at the District of Columbia's tax office has pled guilty in federal court to conspiracy to defraud the government as well as first-degree theft. These charges stem from tax crimes allegedly committed while the woman was working part-time at a Washington tax service in 2009 and 2010.The prosecutors in the case claim that the woman helped 282 people or companies file fraudulent tax returns with the District of Columbia as well as 973 fraudulent returns with the federal government. She was accused of supplying receipts for charity spending that were fraudulent so that tax filers could claim deductions. The activity took place over the 2008 and 2009 tax seasons, but some of the fraudulent refunds dated back to 2006. The total taken in the fake receipt scam has been estimated at $14.7 million.

Ex-football players being sentenced for tax fraud, wire fraud

Professional football fans in Massachusetts and around the New England region may be familiar with the name Michael Bennett. Bennett, who played for several years in the NFL, maybe most notably with the Minnesota Vikings, pleaded guilty to wire fraud earlier this year and was sentenced last week to serve 15 months in prison for his crime.

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