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Monthly Archives: March 2018

Taxpayers Who Owe Taxes Have Multiple Payment Options

The Internal Revenue Service reminded taxpayers that there are several easy options to pay taxes electronically. For those unable to pay on time, the IRS offers a variety of ways to take care of a tax liability.

This is the fifth in a series of nine IRS news releases called the TaxTime Guide, designed to help taxpayers navigate common tax issues.

This year’s tax-filing deadline is April 17. Taxpayers who owe taxes can choose among the following quick and easy electronic payment options:

  • Electronic Funds Withdrawal (EFW). This option allows taxpayers to e-file and pay from their bank account when using tax preparation software or a tax professional. EFW is only available when electronically filing a tax return.
  • Direct Pay. Available at IRS.gov/directpay, this free online tool allows taxpayers to securely pay their taxes directly from checking or savings accounts without any fees or preregistration. Taxpayers can schedule payments up to 30 days in advance. Those using the tool will receive immediate confirmation when they submit their payment. Taxpayers can opt in to receive email notifications about their payments each time they use Direct Pay.
  • Credit or Debit Card. Pay online, by phone or with a mobile device through any of the authorized debit and credit card processors. The processor charges a fee. The IRS doesn’t receive or charge any fees for payments made with a debit or credit card. Go to https://www.irs.gov/payments for authorized card processors and phone numbers.
  • IRS2Go. The IRS2Go mobile app is free and offers taxpayers the option to make a payment with Direct Pay for free or by debit or credit card through an approved payment processor for a fee. Download IRS2Go free from Google Play, the Apple App Store or the Amazon App Store.
  • Electronic Federal Tax Payment System. This free service gives taxpayers a safe and convenient way to pay individual and business taxes by phone or online. To enroll and for more information, call 800-555-4477, or visit eftps.gov. Both business and individual taxpayers can opt in to receive email notifications about their payments.
  • Cash. Taxpayers paying with cash can use the PayNearMe option. Payments are limited to $1,000 per day, and a $3.99 fee applies to each payment. The IRS urges taxpayers choosing this option to start early, because PayNearMe involves a four-step process. Initiating a payment well ahead of the tax deadline will help taxpayers avoid interest and penalty charges. The IRS offers this option in cooperation with OfficialPayments.com/fed and participating 7-Eleven stores in 34 states. Details, including answers to frequently asked questions, are at IRS.gov/paywithcash.
  • Same-Day Wire Payments. Taxpayers may be able to do a same-day wire transfer from their financial institution. Contact the financial institution for availability, cost and cut-off times. Download and complete the Same-Day Taxpayer Worksheet and take it to the desired financial institution. If paying for more than one tax form or period, complete a separate worksheet for each payment.   

Taxpayers must file their 2017 tax returns by April 17, 2018, or request a six-month extension. Extensions can be requested using Free File, by filing Form 4868 or by paying all or part of  the estimated income tax due and indicating that the payment is for an extension using Direct Pay, the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS) or a credit or debit card. Taxpayers do not have to file a separate extension form and they receive a confirmation number for their records.

Taxpayers who choose to pay by check or money order should make the payment out to the “United States Treasury.” To help ensure that the payment gets credited promptly, also enclose a Form 1040-V payment voucher. Also, print on the front of the check or money order: “2017 Form 1040”; name; address; daytime phone number; and Social Security number.

Taxpayers can go to IRS.gov/account to securely access information about their federal tax account. They can view the amount they owe, pay online or set up an online payment agreement; access their tax records online; review the past 18 months of payment history; and view key tax return information for the current year as filed. Visit IRS.gov/secureaccessto review the required identity authentication process.

Taxpayers who owe, but cannot pay the balance in full, do have options. Often, they qualify for one of several relief programs, including:

Payment Plans, Installment Agreements -- Most individuals can set up a payment plan, including an installment agreement, with the IRS. If you owe $50,000 or less in combined tax, penalties and interest you may qualify for a long-term payment plan of up to 72 months. If you owe less than $100,000 in combined tax, penalties and interest, you may qualify for a short-term payment plan of up to 120 days. Alternatively, for a long-term payment plan, taxpayers can request an installment agreement by filing Form 9465. Download the form from IRS.gov and mail it along with a tax return, IRS bill or notice.

Offer in Compromise -- Some taxpayers may qualify for an offer in compromise. This is an agreement between a taxpayer and the IRS that settles the taxpayer’s tax liabilities for less than the full amount owed. To help determine eligibility, individual taxpayers may use the Offer in Compromise Pre-Qualifier, a free online tool available on IRS.gov.

Taxpayers can find answers to tax questions, tax forms and instructions and easy-to-use tools online at IRS.gov24 hours a day, seven days a week. No appointments needed and no waiting on hold.   

 Can't Pay Your IRS Taxes?  

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Robert Blumenfeld, Esq.,Ronald Marini, Esq. & Anita Friedlander, Esq.

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TIGTA Report Concludes That the IRS Loses Stuff?

According to a report (TIGTA Report) dated July 13 2017, by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA), the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) systematically loses and destroys important taxpayer records due to carelessness and negligence.

The TIGTA Report details the calamities of computer hard drives erroneously destroyed or damaged; the IRS does not follow its own policies requiring it to document records that have been searched; IRS policies for preserving records from separated employees are woefully inadequate; repeated changes in IRS’ electronic media storage policies combined with reliance on employees to maintain records has led to confusion and loss of records; a recently instituted executive e-mail retention policy, which should have resulted in the archiving of e-mails was not implemented effectively simply because some personnel did not turn on the automatic archiving feature! 

It Can’t Get Much Worse Than This or Can It? 

The TIGTA Report noted a 2014 incident: "We found that when an employee separated from the IRS in August 2014, the employee left his laptop with his secretary. That employee was under a litigation hold to ensure that relevant evidence was preserved for use in litigation. However, without a policy in place to ensure that laptops of separating employees under litigation holds were maintained, that laptop was sent to the IT organization for standard sanitization and disposal." 

IRS policies do not comply with certain Federal requirements that agencies must ensure that all records are retrievable and usable for as long as needed. For example, IRS e-mail retention policies are not adequate because e-mails are not automatically archived for all IRS employees. Instead, the IRS’s current policy instructs employees to take manual actions to archive e-mails by saving them permanently on computer hard drives or network shared drives.

This policy has resulted in lost records when computer hard drives are destroyed or damaged. In addition, a recently instituted executive e-mail retention policy, which should have resulted in the archiving of e-mails from specific executives, was not implemented effectively because some executives did not turn on the automatic archiving feature.

For certain cases that TIGTA reviewed, IRS policies were not implemented consistently to ensure that all relevant documents were searched and produced when responding to external requests for records. TIGTA’s review of 30 completed Freedom of Information Act requests found that in more than half of the responses, the IRS did not follow its own policies that require it to document what records were searched. TIGTA also found that IRS policies for preserving records from separated employees were not adequate.
TIGTA made five recommendations related to improving the IRS’s policies for record retention and responding to external requests for records. For example, TIGTA recommended that the IRS implement an enterprise e-mail solution that enables the IRS to comply with Federal records management requirements. TIGTA also recommended that the newly issued policy on the collection and preservation of Federal records associated with separated employees is disseminated throughout the agency to ensure consistent compliance with Federal records retention requirements.
In their response to our report, IRS management agreed with all five recommendations. The IRS stated that deployment of a new enterprise e-mail solution is currently underway that shouldenable the IRS to comply with Federal recordsmanagement requirements. The IRS also statedthat it has issued interim guidance on theseparating employee clearing process forcollecting and preserving Federal records, whichhas been disseminated throughout the IRS.

Will things really improve?  Let’s see if the IRS finally gets some funding?

 

Have an IRS Tax Problem?  

 

 

 

 Contact the Tax Lawyers at 

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Read more at: Tax Times blog

Plastic Surgeon's Can't “Surgically Enhance” The Evidence at His Trial & is Stuck With His 3 Year Prison Sentence

According to Law360 The Third Circuit on March 16, 2018 declined to overturn a plastic surgeon's three-year prison sentence and $96,000 fine for tax evasion and was unswayed by his argument that the trial court erred in excluding evidence that he eventually paid the tax.

The appeals court, in a 2-1 ruling, said the New Jersey federal court didn’t abuse its discretion by excluding evidence that David Evdokimow eventually paid his outstanding tax debt. Allowing the government’s comments on that subject in its closing argument similarly didn’t constitute an abuse of discretion, the opinion said.

Evdokimow had argued the comments implied to the jury that his tax debt remained outstanding at the time of trial, which was not the case, and had asked for a jury instruction that he paid his taxes prior to his indictment, which the district court also denied.

 
Oh Well There Are No Make Overs in Tax Fraud Litigation!
Starting in 2006, Evdokimow hired John Wright and Ginger Sweeton to help him make financial arrangements to reduce his taxes. The three put in place a scheme involving the creation of shell corporations to which Evdokimow, a plastic surgeon, transferred proceeds from his practice. He then used the funds to pay his personal expenses, the appeals court said.

Evdokimow’s friends and employees were listed as the corporations’ directors and officers, and opened bank accounts in the names of the corporations at his request. Evdokimow had these individuals create signature stamps, which he used to write checks from the shell corporations’ bank accounts and to file tax returns for the corporations, the decision said.

Once Evdokimow transferred money from his practice to the corporations, he claimed those transfers as business expenses on both his personal tax returns and the business tax returns for his company, De’Omilia Plastic Surgery, reducing taxable income for himself and his practice, the ruling said. The court described additional tax-dodging practices by Evdokimow, such as paying part of his employees’ salaries through checks purportedly written as bonuses or for reimbursement of expenses from which no taxes had been withheld.

 
As a Result of the Scheme, Between 2006 and 2010, Evdokimow and His Company Together Failed to Report More Than $11.7 Million in Income, Resulting in Nearly $3 Million in Unpaid Taxes!!!

 
The appeals court also noted that the jury “heard extensive evidence that contradicted Evdokimow’s accountant that he was unaware of and uninvolved in the tax fraud,” including evidence from his former office manager, who said he ignored warnings from his former accountant not to involve himself with Wright and Sweeton.

The appeals court found no basis to conclude the district court abused its discretion and upheld the $96,000 fine and the three-year prison sentence.

The case is United States of America v. David Evdokimow, case number 15-3876, in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.

 

Have a Criminal IRS Tax Problem?  

and Need Experience Tax Representation...
Robert Blumenfeld, Esq.,Ronald Marini, Esq. & Anita Friedlander, Esq.

 Contact the Tax Lawyers at 

Marini & Associates, P.A. 

 
 
for a FREE Tax Consultation

Toll Free at 888-8TaxAid (888) 882-9243
 
 
 
 

 

Read more at: Tax Times blog

EU Adds Bahamas, Saint Kitts, Nevis and the US Virgin Islands to its BLACKLIST!

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The EU Council of Finance Ministers has added:

  1. the Bahamas,
  2. Saint Kitts,
  3. Nevis, and
  4. the US Virgin Islands

to the EU Blacklist of non-cooperative tax jurisdictions. At the same time,

  1. Anguilla,
  2. Antigua and Barbuda,
  3. the British Virgin Islands and
  4. Dominica

have been put on the 'grey list' of jurisdictions that have promised to amend their tax systems in line with EU requirements.

  1. Bahrain,
  2. the Marshall Islands and
  3. Saint Lucia

have been moved from the blacklist to the grey list after giving similar undertakings.


Have An Offshore Tax Problem?
 
 
 Want to Know if the OVDP Program is Right for You?

 
(Ending September 28th)
 
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Marini& Associates, P.A. 
 
 
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Toll Free at 888-8TaxAid (888) 882-9243
 

 
 
 
 
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Read more at: Tax Times blog