Mr. FBAR Gets Bolder in Toth – “Deemed Willfulness” for FBAR Violation

Today’s blog post looks again at the Report of Foreign Financial Accounts (Form 114), the well-known “FBAR”.  It examines a case of first impression when it comes to finding a “willful” FBAR violation. Before delving into the case, I provide readers with a quick introduction to Mr. FBAR. The FBAR has its genesis in the … Continue reading Mr. FBAR Gets Bolder in Toth – “Deemed Willfulness” for FBAR Violation

Breaking! Gird Your Loins for Greater FBAR Penalties! Supreme Court Denies Review in Toth/ Excessive Fines Issue

United States v. Toth:  Just yesterday, the United States Supreme Court denied review of Toth, a case being carefully followed by tax professionals who deal with FBAR cases, US persons abroad, and all things "foreign". Toth was an FBAR “willful” penalty case on appeal to the First Circuit, with one of the issues being whether … Continue reading Breaking! Gird Your Loins for Greater FBAR Penalties! Supreme Court Denies Review in Toth/ Excessive Fines Issue

Am I Being Cynical? Serious Problems Acknowledged -Too Little, Too Late for Taxpayers Outside the US

The Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) recently released its 2022 report to Congress.  In one portion of the Report (listed in “Most Serious Problems Encountered by Taxpayers” #10 OVERSEAS TAXPAYERS: Taxpayers Outside of the United States Face Significant Barriers to Meeting Their U.S. Tax Obligations) TAS provided a succinct review of the problems faced by American … Continue reading Am I Being Cynical? Serious Problems Acknowledged -Too Little, Too Late for Taxpayers Outside the US

What is a Closing Agreement and When Will One Be Entered Into by the IRS?

Last week's blog post, here, discussed the details of the Internal Revenue Service "Voluntary Disclosure Practice" (VDP).  VDP is the one and only method for voluntary disclosures that apply to criminal tax activity, regardless if the activity involves offshore issues or strictly domestic ones.  The final conclusion of a taxpayer’s entry into the Voluntary Disclosure … Continue reading What is a Closing Agreement and When Will One Be Entered Into by the IRS?

IRS Voluntary Disclosure Practice and Closing Agreement: Understanding the Basics

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Voluntary Disclosure Practice (VDP) is alive and well. Its parameters are set out in Internal Revenue Manual (IRM) provisions dedicated strictly to the VDP.  IRM 9.5.11.9.1 Voluntary Disclosure Practice, is available here.   Under the VDP, the nature and extent of penalties to be assessed against a taxpayer will, to a … Continue reading IRS Voluntary Disclosure Practice and Closing Agreement: Understanding the Basics

IRS is Ruthless in Seeking “Willful” FBAR Penalties – But the Court Won’t Have it….

We have another important FBAR case, US v Katholos No17cv531 WDNY Aug 10 2022.  Ms Katholos was first introduced to my readers in 2018 (blog post here). An update on Katholos was posted just last week detailing a court’s clarification, perhaps an expansion, of the definition of “financial interest” in an account requiring FBAR reporting.  … Continue reading IRS is Ruthless in Seeking “Willful” FBAR Penalties – But the Court Won’t Have it….

Mr. FBAR – He Lurks in Every Corner – Katholos Case Expands Meaning of “Financial Interest”

We have another important FBAR case. The case is significant for 2 distinct reasons 1) clarification, and some may say, an ‘expansion’ of the definition of “financial interest” in an account requiring FBAR reporting and 2) a firm demonstration how far the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will go to assert a civil “willful” FBAR penalty. … Continue reading Mr. FBAR – He Lurks in Every Corner – Katholos Case Expands Meaning of “Financial Interest”

Are Streamlined Audits Becoming More Common? The Streamlined Submission that went Belly-Up (Part II)

Are "Streamlined" audits on the rise?  It appears so. In 2016, two years after the Streamlined Procedures were put into place, then-Acting Assistant Attorney General Caroline Ciraolo (Dept. of Justice) had this to say in an interview: "After seven years of voluntary disclosure programs, nearly 200 criminal prosecutions, and the increased assessment and suits to … Continue reading Are Streamlined Audits Becoming More Common? The Streamlined Submission that went Belly-Up (Part II)

What Can Happen if Your Streamlined Submission Goes Belly-Up? (Part I)

The IRS Streamlined Procedure, whether the Streamlined Foreign Offshore Procedure (SFOP) or the Streamlined Domestic Offshore Procedure (SDOP) of 2014 is still available for taxpayers, but the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is apparently closely policing those who enter the program. The IRS is now very carefully vetting the cases coming in. A hallmark of the … Continue reading What Can Happen if Your Streamlined Submission Goes Belly-Up? (Part I)

FBAR Penalty & the US Supreme Court: If the Penalty is “Per Form”, are “Per Account” Penalty Refunds Possible?

My earlier blog posts discussed the split in the circuit courts whether the FBAR $10,000 civil nonwillful penalty is to be applied on a “per account” rather than “per form” basis. The Fifth and Ninth circuit courts disagree on the statutory interpretation of the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) (31 U.S.C. § 5321(a)(5)(B)(i)), particularly what constitutes … Continue reading FBAR Penalty & the US Supreme Court: If the Penalty is “Per Form”, are “Per Account” Penalty Refunds Possible?