A ruling in a San Francisco federal court on April 29 allows the IRS to seek information on US taxpayers who may have offshore bank accounts in the Caribbean. Judge Thelton E. Henderson authorized the IRS to serve a "John Doe" summons on financial services firm Wells Fargo & Co.
Masood Chotani, a CPA from Los Angeles, was sentenced April 25 to two years in prison, followed by one year of supervised release, the Justice Department and the IRS announced. Chotani was also ordered to pay $60,705 in restitution to the IRS.
Exercising due diligence is a big deal to the IRS. CPA Tim W. Kaskey discovered that the hard way. He was disbarred for failing to exercise due diligence in preparing tax returns for a corporation and its husband and wife shareholders.
Eight-time Grammy-winning singer Lauryn Hill was back in court April 22, presumably for sentencing in the tax evasion case against her. With three possible counts of tax fraud against her, she was facing a year in prison for each count.
Since the bombings at the Boston Marathon on April 15, millions of dollars have been donated by people and businesses from across the country to help the families of the three people killed in the attack and those who suffered severe injuries.
Former IRS agent-turned-tax preparer Steven Martinez was sentenced April 15 to almost twenty-four years in prison for defrauding clients of more than $11 million and then plotting their murders to prevent them from testifying about the theft.
The IRS is changing its controversial policy of accessing taxpayer e-mails without first obtaining a warrant, but it’s not making any promises regarding social media postings on sites like Facebook and Twitter.
NBA agent LaPoe Smith Jr. of San Antonio is fighting one legal battle after another, though to some extent, the battles are connected. Smith has represented NBA stars that include Antoine Walker, Bo Outlaw, and Penny Hardaway as well as pro athletes from other sports.
It looks like the last-minute run-up to the April 15 tax deadline has been particularly frantic for accountants, taxpayers, and the IRS this year. According to TIGTA, as of March 9, the IRS had received more than 65 million tax returns, down from the nearly 72 million returns filed during the same period in 2012.
The IRS continues to work on improvements relating to tax reporting of assets held in foreign banking accounts. Now it has released a new draft of Form 8957 that it expects will lead to increased compliance.
The United States has filed a civil injunction lawsuit seeking to shut down Mo' Money Taxes of Memphis, Tennessee. The complaint alleges that the estimated tax loss from fraudulent tax return preparation at Mo' Money Taxes in 2011 exceeds $9 million.
The IRS plans to spend 18 percent less time auditing businesses with assets of $10 million or more in its current fiscal year compared to two years ago, according to a report from Syracuse University's Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC).
The National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU), the union that represents the IRS workforce, said IRS budget cutting is hurting taxpayers, in particular, senior citizens, small business owners, and the victims of identity theft.
According to news reports filtering out of Washington, the IRS will begin employing new technology this year that can track a taxpayer's online activities ranging from Facebook and Twitter posts to credit card and PayPal transactions.