Legal issues

Tax

IRS Is Sued for Seizing Medical Records

The IRS has come under fire recently for reportedly authorizing intrusions into e-mails and online postings without obtaining a search warrant. Now it appears medical records might not be safe from the prying eyes of the nation's tax collection agency.
A&A

Hewlett Packard Faces $1 Billion Lawsuit from Shareholders

Hewlett Packard (HP) shareholders are suing the company for $1 billion over the "vastly overvalued" acquisition of the British software firm Autonomy. According to claims brought against the multinational, HP tried to pull out of its $11.1 billion takeover of Autonomy before the deal closed.
Practice

Maintaining Wage and Hour Compliance in 2013

Over the past six years or so, wage and hour lawsuits have become, if not commonplace, extremely prevalent. This trend, fueled by a large number of workers displaced following the financial crisis and stoked by successful settlements and court rulings over the past several years, is unlikely to end anytime soon.
Tax

IRS Summons Wells Fargo for Data on Offshore Accounts

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.
Tax

State Nexus Policies Focus of Bloomberg BNA Survey

Many states say they would find nexus as a result of owning a web server in their jurisdiction, telecommuting employees, and making transactions that involve non-US entities, according to the thirteenth annual "Survey of State Tax Departments" by Bloomberg BNA.
Practice

Cover Your Notes: Confidentiality Depends on Role of Accountant

A business owner calls a meeting to discuss the tax consequences of a particular business transaction. Two years later, the business is involved in litigation related to the transaction, and the plaintiff seeks to discover the outside accountant's notes from the initial meeting.
Practice

Due Diligence Found Lacking in Recent Case

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.
Tax

NBA Agent LaPoe Smith Jr. Indicted on Tax-Related Crimes

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.
Tax

Can the IRS Snoop into Personal E-mail?

It's not likely that taxpayers are "blind copying" the IRS on their e-mails to friends or sharing their posts on social media sites with the IRS. But the IRS may be reading those messages anyway.
Tax

Online Sales Tax Court Decision Could Set Stage for Supreme Court Showdown

A court ruling last week that upholds a decision to force online retailers to collect New York State sales tax may force a Supreme Court battle or action by Congress to allow states to claim tax revenues they've lost to online purchases.
Tax

Linebacker Romanowski Loses $13 Million Tax Deduction

As a former defensive player, Bill Romanowski should've seen this latest round of trouble coming, but he didn't. Having been a linebacker for several teams over his career, he's seen his share of controversy.
Tax

Court Denies IRS Appeal to Lift Injunction on Tax Preparer Licensing

On March 27, a federal appeals court refused to lift an injunction issued January 18 by a lower court against the IRS' effort to license tax preparers. The ruling means the IRS' requirements for mandatory testing and continuing education of all tax preparers remain suspended.
Tax

US Supreme Court to Hear Case on IRS Penalties on Tax Shelters

The US Supreme Court announced it will review a suit involving the IRS' practice of imposing 40 percent penalties on allegedly abusive tax shelters.
Tax

Stephen Baldwin Takes Plea Deal for Tax

A few months ago actor Stephen Baldwin was arrested – and released – on charges of failure to pay his New York State income tax for three years. Based on those charges, he could have faced four years in prison. In early March he returned to court and entered a plea agreement to resolve the issue.
Practice

Express Scripts Sues Ernst & Young Alleging Theft of Trade Secrets

Express Scripts, one of the nation's largest pharmacy benefits managers, has sued its accounting firm, Ernst & Young, and one of that firm's former partners, alleging theft of its trade secrets and confidential and proprietary business data.
Tax

Is Pole Dancing a Tax-Exempt Art Form?

If the owners of the Upstate New York strip club Nite Moves have their way, the Supreme Court will be taking up that question. They are challenging a $124,921 tax bill levied by state tax authorities and affirmed by appeals court judges.
Education & Careers

Judge Rules KPMG Gender Discrimination Suit Can Proceed

A class-action gender discrimination lawsuit filed by five former KPMG LLP female professional employees against the Big Four accounting firm may go forward, a US district court judge in New York ruled February 7.
Tax

How about a Little Sex with That Tax Audit?

That's what one Oregon taxpayer said he was offered by an IRS auditor. But it wasn't exactly a request, according to forty-year-old Vincent Burroughs. The "offer" came with a threat of hefty IRS penalties if he said no.
Tax

IRS Intensifies National Crackdown on Identity Theft

Continuing a year-long enforcement push against refund fraud and identity theft, the IRS announced the results of a massive national sweep targeting identity theft suspects in thirty-two states and Puerto Rico, involving 215 cities.
Tax

Court Upholds Injunction; IRS Revives PTIN System

On February 1, the District Court for the District of Columbia, which had enjoined the IRS from enforcing its new regulatory schemes, modified its order to clarify that the IRS can continue to operate the system requiring PTINs.

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