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When Tax Day means hiring a lawyer
Posted on April 15th, 2016
What is worse than Tax Day? Having to hire a criminal tax lawyer on Tax Day. Generally speaking, the Internal Revenue Service just wants your money. If you are behind or late in paying your taxes, contact the IRS directly and they will work with you. You, of course, will need to pay interest and penalties for being late, but you will not go to jail or face criminal charges.
When do you need a criminal tax lawyer to defend you against the Federal Government and the IRS?
1. If federal agents show up at your house or business, this is a sure sign that you need a lawyer. They will attempt to and are allowed to speak with you and solicit admissions. But they will use your words against you in prosecuting you for tax fraud. If federal agents come knocking at your door, hire a lawyer before saying anything.
2. If you are being audited, you should first call your accountant and have a very frank discussion with them. Make sure you have supplied everything to your accountant and they have supplied everything to the IRS. If you or your accountant are concerned that you cannot be completely honest and cooperate with the IRS audit, then it is time to consult a criminal tax lawyer.
Criminal tax evasion and tax fraud are not negligence nor tardiness. They are intentionally hiding and misrepresenting income to the IRS. Penalties for tax evasion can be severe and can result in a long incarceration.
In a recent New York Times article regarding the Panama Papers that revealed global tax evasion, the President of Panama points out that the actions of his country and the people exposed were often not criminal. Tax laws are complicated and often permit actions that at first glance may appear questionable, but are in fact legal. It is important that you have a lawyer who understands the tax laws and how to avoid being investigated and charged with tax crimes.
For some further help on Tax Day, see the following New York Times article on Tips for Tax Day.