7,500 accept IRS amnesty, speculation program might be extended

The Internal Revenue Service is proudly announcing that it was able to gather up 7,500 volunteers in its international tax evasion net as a result of an amnesty program that ended earlier this month. U.S. citizens who have been hiding money in offshore accounts and neglecting to pay the appropriate U.S. income taxes on earnings related to that money, were offered the opportunity to turn themselves in and avoid criminal charges and jail time, and were also given a reduction of penalties on the unpaid taxes.

“It’s way too early to say how much money that will bring in,” IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman told a group of CPAs Monday at the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants’ National Tax Conference in Washington, D.C. We have people who came in with accounts as small as $10,000, and we have accounts larger than $100 million that came in through this program.

 

“The most important thing about this program, is that anybody that came in, it’s not just about paying the taxes, interest, and penalties,” Shulman continued. “It’s about having them in the system for years to come and paying the taxes for years to come.”

 

Another key aspect of the amnesty program will be mining the information from the people that came forward. Shulman explained that the IRS will be scouring the tax returns and questioning the taxpayers to find the advisors, accountants, and others who helped taxpayers hide assets off shore.

 

Although the offshore amnesty program ended on October 15, there is speculation that the IRS might extend the program. “In the last day or so there have been some indications that the IRS is considering extending that program,” said Mark Luscombe, JD, CPA, principal tax analyst for Commerce Clearinghouse, Inc., speaking to accounting professionals Tuesday at the CCH User Conference in National Harbor, MD. “If you can get 7,500 people to come involuntarily, that’s much easier than having to track them down.”

 

You may like these other stories...

IRS must take oath on Lerner emails: judgeMackenzie Weinger of Politico reported on Thursday that a federal judge ordered the IRS to explain under oath how it lost emails connected to Lois Lerner, the ex-IRS official at the...
The Republican-controlled House of Representatives passed a bill on Friday morning that would permanently extend the bonus depreciation tax break for businesses.The measure, HR 4718, which was crafted by Representative Pat...
The Republican-led House of Representatives is expected to pass a bill this week that would permanently extend the bonus depreciation tax break. But don’t expect President Obama to sign it.The Obama administration said...

Upcoming CPE Webinars

Jul 16
Hand off work to others with finesse and success. Kristen Rampe, CPA will share how to ensure delegated work is properly handled from start to finish in this content-rich one hour webinar.
Jul 17
This webcast will cover the preparation of the statement of cash flows and focus on accounting and disclosure policies for other important issues described below.
Jul 23
We can’t deny a great divide exists between the expectations and workplace needs of Baby Boomers and Millennials. To create thriving organizational performance, we need to shift the way in which we groom future leaders.
Jul 24
In this presentation Excel expert David Ringstrom, CPA revisits the Excel feature you should be using, but probably aren't. The Table feature offers the ability to both boost the integrity of your spreadsheets, but reduce maintenance as well.