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)

Foreign Accounts and Assets: How I Approach a “Streamlined” Tax Filing Nowadays

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Streamlined Procedures of 2014 are still available for taxpayers with tax noncompliance issues that involve unreported income from a foreign financial asset. The Procedures can help taxpayers who have not filed certain information returns associated with the foreign asset (e.g., Form 8938; Form 5471 pertaining to ownership in a foreign … Continue reading Foreign Accounts and Assets: How I Approach a “Streamlined” Tax Filing Nowadays

FBAR – Fifth Circuit, Non-Willful Penalty Multiplies “Per Account” in Bittner Case

Ka’Ching! It’s a win for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS)! At the end of November, in United States v. Bittner, (No. 20-4059, 5th Cir. 11/30/21), the Fifth Circuit overruled the lower court and held that the FBAR non-willful US$10,000 penalty applies on a per account rather than a per form basis.  The taxpayer was hit … Continue reading FBAR – Fifth Circuit, Non-Willful Penalty Multiplies “Per Account” in Bittner Case

Is IRS Finally Seeing the Light on Foreign Information Returns?

Bloomberg Tax - I invite readers to enjoy my recently published article, copied in full below. Reproduced with permission. Published December 3, 2021. The Bureau of National Affairs, Inc. (800-372-1033) http://www.bloombergindustry.com published in Tax Insights and Commentary News, online here.   Various options are available to correct the problem of missing information returns for U.S. … Continue reading Is IRS Finally Seeing the Light on Foreign Information Returns?

IRS Determined to Collect FBAR Penalties  – “We Have Ways of Making You Pay” … Even if Your Money is Outside the US

The case of US v Schwarzbaum (decided October 26, 2021), discussed in today’s blog post, serves as a harsh reminder of how far the US government will go to collect FBAR penalties. The importance of posting about this latest development is to underscore how aggressive FBAR penalty collection efforts are now becoming.  Of course, this case … Continue reading IRS Determined to Collect FBAR Penalties  – “We Have Ways of Making You Pay” … Even if Your Money is Outside the US

Cannot Expatriate! US Consulate in Dubai – Joining Others Worldwide, Closes the Door on Expatriations

An alternative title for this post could be:  "Hasn't the State Department Heard About Zoom?" What’s become of the right to relinquish one’s US citizenship?  It has been thrown a curveball for the past year and a half.   Many US Embassies and Consulates throughout the world are not offering the service.  Those that did (or … Continue reading Cannot Expatriate! US Consulate in Dubai – Joining Others Worldwide, Closes the Door on Expatriations

Constitutionality of NIIT and Passport Revocation Rules Stand: Taxpayers Sacrificed in US Supreme Court and Tax Court  

The US Supreme Court and the Tax Court issued two big decisions impacting many US individual taxpayers. Here’s a short and not-so-sweet summary of what went down: The 3.8% Net Investment Income Tax Stands On June 17, 2021, by a clear majority vote,  the Affordable Care  (ACA) was upheld by the US Supreme Court, including … Continue reading Constitutionality of NIIT and Passport Revocation Rules Stand: Taxpayers Sacrificed in US Supreme Court and Tax Court  

FBAR Developments: “Non-Willful” Taxpayer Wins & “Willful” Dead Taxpayer Loses Beyond the Grave!

Here are two recent cases regarding FBAR - One, a taxpayer win and the other a taxpayer loss. Let's start with the good news: The taxpayer win! The penalty for non-willful FBAR violations is generally US$10,000 per violation.  The question is, what is the "violation"? The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) believes this penalty applies for … Continue reading FBAR Developments: “Non-Willful” Taxpayer Wins & “Willful” Dead Taxpayer Loses Beyond the Grave!

MERRY CHRISTMAS: FATCA Drops Coal on the Doorstep of Americans Abroad

Merry Christmas to all of my readers and followers who celebrate this special time of year. I hope the joy of the season will follow you into the New Year. Sadly, Christmas won’t be merry for many Americans abroad who are ensnared in the grip of “FATCA,” the notorious “Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act”.  Briefly, … Continue reading MERRY CHRISTMAS: FATCA Drops Coal on the Doorstep of Americans Abroad