We know it is coming. A new amnesty.
(Aside. The IRS people aren’t supposed to use the word “amnesty” in describing the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program. Just like they’re not allowed to use the words “tax protestor.”)
In the Jan. 24, 2011 edition of Tax Notes Today, 2011 TNT 15-1, there is a report from the ABA Tax Section meeting in Florida.
Steven Miller, IRS deputy commissioner for services and enforcement, gave what are called “wide-ranging luncheon remarks.” FTFA:
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The IRS is close to announcing the details of a follow-up initiative to entice more taxpayers with unreported offshore accounts to voluntarily disclose them to the IRS, Steven Miller, IRS deputy commissioner for services and enforcement, said January 21.
It is likely that some of its customers are about to get an uncomfortable letter from their country’s tax authorities. I’m not saying that the employees of Bank Julius Baer have done anything evil. I’m just saying that a lot of eyeballs are looking in that direction right now.Rudolf Elmer is back
I have written about Rudolf Elmer before. He’s a disgruntled former employee of Bank Julius Baer. When he didn’t get the severance package he wanted, he leaked some files to Wikileaks.... continue reading
From John Nolan, a fellow tax lawyer in Frankfurt:
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Here is the first look at the IRS’s brand new baby.
Looks like they’re going to get it to do double duty and use it for reporting PFICs – and just about anything else that you own that might be foreign and have some value.
Haven’t been able to score a copy of the instructions yet, though.
Those should be really entertaining.
Speaking of FUBAR and entertaining: have you glanced at the comments pouring in on the initial guidance on the new Chapter 4 (Son of QI) reporting requirements?
We are seeing many of our offshore bank amnesty cases reassigned to new Revenue Agents for handling the civil audit.
I don’t know the reason for this, though I can think of several possible explanations:
Here is a September 1, 2010 opinion from the United States District Court in which a taxpayer, after pleading guilty to tax fraud and criminal tax evasion, beat the FBAR penalty that the government was trying to impose.
I will only echo Jack’s opinion here: it shows the difficulty that the government has in proving willfulness for purposes of the penalty. Individual cases require individual assessment of the possibilities. But remember to factor in the high cost of getting all the way to a judge.... continue reading