STEVEN TOSCHER quoted in Tax Notes “Practitioners Balk at Potential DOJ Willful FBAR Argument”
Practitioners are disturbed by a possible legal stance of the Justice Department in the latest dust-up over foreign bank account reporting, which would negate reliance on a professional as a defense to willful penalties.
Tax Notes talked with two practitioners following filings of a joint pretrial statement and proposed jury instructions in Dadurian that seemingly advanced that stance on the part of the government. Later filings on August 15 that came in after those conversations appear to be taking a slightly softer stance. How exactly the case will be argued at trial remains to be seen, however.
“The government is pushing the envelope,” Steven Toscher of Hochman Salkin Toscher Perez PC said. “While most of the courts have untethered willfulness in FBAR cases from its traditional meaning, a taxpayer’s good faith — including reliance on a professional — has always been considered a defense to willful penalties.”
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