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The Long Arm of the Tax Man Nabs Tax Lawyer on the Lam in Canada by Evan Davis

A United States tax lawyer is going to return home after being on an extended vacation in Canada for ten years. But he isn’t returning willingly. When I was at the Department of Justice Tax Division from 1998 through 2005, I spent much of my time shutting down abusive tax schemes through getting courts to … Continue reading The Long Arm of the Tax Man Nabs Tax Lawyer on the Lam in Canada by Evan Davis

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34th Annual National Institute on Criminal Tax Fraud and Seventh Annual National Institute on Tax Controversy

Registration and Hotel information is available at: https://shop.americanbar.org/ebus/ABAEventsCalendar/EventDetails.aspx?productId=281310963 (If the link doesn’t work, search 34th Annual National Institute on Criminal Tax Fraud and the ABA site should come up for you). The Institute conference rooms will be located at the Wynn but rooms can be reserved at either the Wynn or Encore Hotels. Wynn Las … Continue reading 34th Annual National Institute on Criminal Tax Fraud and Seventh Annual National Institute on Tax Controversy

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Is it Illegal for the IRS to Assess More than $100,000 for a Willful FBAR Violation? by Robert Horwitz

Section 5321(a)(5)(A) provides that the Secretary of Treasury “may impose a civil money penalty” on anyone who violates the FBAR reporting requirements.  Originally, the penalty for willful violation was the greater of the amount in the account (not to exceed $100,000) or $25,000. In 2004, Congress amended the FBAR penalty provision to increase the maximum willful … Continue reading Is it Illegal for the IRS to Assess More than $100,000 for a Willful FBAR Violation? by Robert Horwitz

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Steven Toscher Quoted in BNA Daily Tax Report on Information Reporting: IRS Won’t Presume Willful Failure to Report Foreign Accounts by Alison Bennett

BNA Daily Tax Report The IRS, cracking down on failures to report foreign bank accounts, isn’t automatically presuming that failures are  “willful”—a finding that incurs a high penalty. Tax practitioners aren’t fully convinced. “There’s no presumption of willfulness” for not filing a required Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBAR), said Carolyn A. Schenck, … Continue reading Steven Toscher Quoted in BNA Daily Tax Report on Information Reporting: IRS Won’t Presume Willful Failure to Report Foreign Accounts by Alison Bennett

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Steven Toscher to Speak at Strafford Webinar Encore Presentation: Form 5471 Substantial Compliance Rules: New IRS International Practice Unit Guidance

Due to overwhelming popularity, an encore presentation has been scheduled with live Q&A for Thursday, November 30, 1:00pm-2:30pm EST. Click here for more information. Form 5471, Information Return of U.S. Persons With Respect to Certain Foreign Corporations, is one of the most complex reporting obligations in the U.S. offshore information tax reporting regime. A taxpayer … Continue reading Steven Toscher to Speak at Strafford Webinar Encore Presentation: Form 5471 Substantial Compliance Rules: New IRS International Practice Unit Guidance

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STEVE TOSCHER Receives Lifetime Achievement Award for Outstanding Contributions in the Field of Tax Law!

At the 2017 Annual Meeting of the California Tax Bars, Steve Toscher received the 2017 Joanne M. Garvey Award from the Taxation Section of the State Bar of California recognizing his lifetime achievements and outstanding contributions in the field of tax law! With respect to this award, the official statement of Taxation Section provides “Joanne … Continue reading STEVE TOSCHER Receives Lifetime Achievement Award for Outstanding Contributions in the Field of Tax Law!

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“Willful” in the FBAR Context Implies a Knowing of Reckless Failure to File an Accurate FBAR by Robert Horwitz

The Government prevailed in each of the FBAR penalty cases that had previously been decided, but finally a taxpayer convinced a court that he was not liable for the 50% willful penalty. The Court in Bedrosian v. United States (E.D. PA Sept. 20, 2017) held that a taxpayer was not liable for the penalty based … Continue reading “Willful” in the FBAR Context Implies a Knowing of Reckless Failure to File an Accurate FBAR by Robert Horwitz

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A Primer on Material Participation Rules for Real Estate Businesses, Part 5: A Little Explored Rule that Could Make Losses from a Rental Activity Non-Passive by Lacey Strachan

A taxpayer’s trade or business undertakings can be combined to form an “activity” for purposes of the material participation rules if the undertakings “form an appropriate economic unit for measuring gain or loss under the passive activity rules,” considering all relevant facts and circumstances.  Taxpayers have the freedom to group their undertakings using any reasonable … Continue reading A Primer on Material Participation Rules for Real Estate Businesses, Part 5: A Little Explored Rule that Could Make Losses from a Rental Activity Non-Passive by Lacey Strachan

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Marijuana Audit Challenge Includes Claimed Hidden Criminal Case by Nathan J. Richman

Tax Analysts, 2017 A Colorado marijuana business is alleging that an IRS’s civil tax audit is actually a ruse to gather information for a Justice Department criminal drug prosecution. The three petitioners in Rifle Remedies v. United States, No. 1:17-mc-00062-RM (D. Colo.), are seeking to quash a third-party summons issued in an IRS audit to … Continue reading Marijuana Audit Challenge Includes Claimed Hidden Criminal Case by Nathan J. Richman

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IRS Expert Stays in Michael Jackson Case Despite ‘Lies’ by Bryan Koenig

Law360, Washington (October 20, 2017, 8:25 PM EDT) — Although an IRS expert lied on the stand about his work on cases like that of Michael Jackson’s estate, with hundreds of millions of dollars at stake, that isn’t enough to exclude his testimony outright and gut a crucial part of the agency’s case, a U.S. … Continue reading IRS Expert Stays in Michael Jackson Case Despite ‘Lies’ by Bryan Koenig

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A Primer on Material Participation Rules for Real Estate Businesses. Part 4: Special Considerations for Real Estate Professionals with Rental Activities by Lacey Strachan

For taxpayers with rental properties, qualifying as a real estate professional under IRC Section 469(c)(7) is only the first obstacle in avoiding passive activity treatment for rental properties. Definition of Rental Activity. As a threshold matter, it is important to determine whether an activity is in fact a rental activity for purposes of Section 469.  … Continue reading A Primer on Material Participation Rules for Real Estate Businesses. Part 4: Special Considerations for Real Estate Professionals with Rental Activities by Lacey Strachan

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[Dis]Honest Services Only a Crime If They Are Uniquely Governmental Services by Evan Davis

The dominoes continue to fall from last year’s Supreme Court reversal of former Virginia governor Bob McDonnell’s conviction for honest services fraud, for his having set up meetings in exchange for money. On July 12, 2017, the Second Circuit reversed a politician’s convictions for honest services fraud and money laundering because the jury instruction ran … Continue reading [Dis]Honest Services Only a Crime If They Are Uniquely Governmental Services by Evan Davis

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