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?

Recent FBAR Case: IRS Seeks “Willful” Penalty $8.8M Without Much Regard for the Facts

A very recent FBAR case teaches us a few things.  My colleague, attorney John Richardson, noted this after reading the case: "When charities need to raise money they will often have a bake sale or an auction. When the US government wants to raise money it uses an 'FBAR Fundraiser'". Readers, draw your own opinion! … Continue reading Recent FBAR Case: IRS Seeks “Willful” Penalty $8.8M Without Much Regard for the Facts

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

Want Protection from Criminal Prosecution for Tax Noncompliance? IRS Provides Only One Way

As many will remember, the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (OVDP) closed on September 28 2018 with the promise that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) would issue new guidance on voluntary disclosures made after that date.  The guidance arrived on November 20 2018 in the form of a 5-page Memorandum (IRS Memorandum LB&I-09-1118-014) (“Memorandum”) by the … Continue reading Want Protection from Criminal Prosecution for Tax Noncompliance? IRS Provides Only One Way

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

Cryptocurrency – Criminal Investigations have Commenced!

First, a special thank you to Steve Phillips, a tax & business lawyer in Texas, who alerted me to this recent development. According to an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) special agent, Mr. Chris Hueston, the IRS has now officially begun investigations into tax evasion and other crimes tied to cryptocurrency. The announcement made on November … Continue reading Cryptocurrency – Criminal Investigations have Commenced!

Did you Join OVDP? You’d Better Still be in Tax Compliance!

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has now expanded its compliance campaigns and included “post Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program compliance” on the list. On July 19th, the IRS through its Large Business and International (LB&I) Division announced six new “compliance campaigns” for taxpayers. Significantly, one of these campaigns targets taxpayers who had entered an Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (OVDP) … Continue reading Did you Join OVDP? You’d Better Still be in Tax Compliance!

A Dangerous Game: Jail Time for Inherited Foreign Accounts

You may remember my earlier blog post detailing the unenviable case of the wealthy New York Seggerman family which had undisclosed offshore bank accounts inherited from their father. Instead of coming clean and revealing the existence of the accounts to the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS), four of the Seggerman siblings created even more secret … Continue reading A Dangerous Game: Jail Time for Inherited Foreign Accounts

Dubai (and Singapore) – Now IRS Targets for Offshore Investigations

Americans in Dubai / Singapore – If you are not tax compliant, time is really running out.  As reported by Bloomberg on March 8th, an official with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Criminal Investigation (CI) unit announced at a Washington DC Federal Bar Association event that CI is considering Dubai and Singapore as its "next … Continue reading Dubai (and Singapore) – Now IRS Targets for Offshore Investigations