Sep 122012
 
IRS $104 Million Whistleblower Payment Should Make Foreign Account Holders Nervous

Bradley Birkenfeld, a former UBS AG bank executive, was instrumental in helping U.S. authorities expose tax evasion facilitated by the Swiss banking giant.  The information Birkenfeld provided led to an investigation that ultimately resulted in a 2009 settlement between the United States and UBS, with the latter agreeing to pay $780 million in fines and to turn over the names of thousands of Americans suspected of using Swiss bank accounts to evade taxes.  This settlement would be the precursor to the breaking of the backbone of the Swiss banking industry as a haven for tax-dodgers.  On Tuesday, Birkenfeld got his More…

Aug 172012
 
Swiss Banks Begins Turning Over Their Own Employees To The IRS

A frequent topic of conversation on this blog is the issue of foreign tax havens and the trouble they can cause with the IRS.  Usually, these articles discuss the consequences to taxpayers who have maintained foreign accounts in banks which are now working with the IRS in an effort to save themselves from further prosecution. However, this time it appears that a number of Swiss banks are throwing their own employees under the bus. At least five Swiss banks, including HSBC Holdings Plc’s Swiss unit, Credit Suisse Group AG (CSGN) and Julius Baer Group Ltd. (BAER), have supplied e-mails and More…

Feb 172012
 
IRS Releases 2012 List Of The  “Dirty Dozen” Tax Scams

Once again, tax season is upon us and the IRS has issued the annual “dirty dozen” tax scams. Topping this year’s list is identity theft.  In response to growing identity theft concerns, the IRS has declared its intent to embark on a comprehensive strategy that is focused on preventing, detecting and resolving identity theft cases as soon as possible.  In addition to the law-enforcement crackdown, the IRS has stepped up its internal reviews to spot false tax returns before tax refunds are issued and has been working to help victims of the identity theft refund schemes. The entire list is More…

Jan 122012
 
IRS Reopens Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (OVDP)

Previously, we posted a blog detailing the announcement by Credit Suisse Group AG, Switzerland’s second-biggest bank, that it intended to disclose confidential client account data to the Swiss tax authorities, who would then decide whether to disclose it to the IRS.  At that time, we examined the closure of the 2011 “voluntary disclosure” program, wherein those with offshore undisclosed accounts are given the opportunity to report their holdings without fear of criminal prosecution, and speculated as to whether the IRS would extend another opportunity for Credit Suisse clients to make a full and voluntary disclosure. Now it appears that the More…