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May 21, 2008 - Phil Hodgen

U.S. taxpayers with undeclared offshore accounts: come to Jesus!

The Liechtenstein tax evasion drum has been beaten by the German tax authorities and German tax evaders are running for cover. It’s time for U.S. residents to listen to the rhythm.

Marketwatch has published an article, “Offshore-Account Holders Bite Their Nails“, which shows the pressure being imposed on U.S. residents. It also contains a quick overview of how you (hypothetically, because of course YOU would never be a tax dodger, would you? 🙂 ) can clean up this mess if you didn’t disclose off-shore assets:

  • Pretend there isn’t a problem and cross your fingers (the “ostrich” approach);
  • File amended tax returns (and other forms that might be required) quietly, pay the taxes, and hope things don’t blow up too badly (the “quiet disclosure”); or
  • Hire a lawyer who goes and talks to the IRS to work out how you come in from the cold in a pain-minimizing way.
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