IRS: Disclose Offshore Accounts or Go to Jail

IRS: Disclose Offshore Accounts or Go to Jail

Brian

That's pretty much the headline from a CNBC article on Friday. And it's true.

In 2009, 15,000 Americans came forward and admitted having foreign bank accounts. Unfortunately, Uncle Sam estimates there are some 500,000 more people hiding money offshore. Opening a bank account in another country isn't illegal. There are a whole host of reasons why people may wish to send money offshore. It only becomes illegal when you send money to a foreign country in the hopes of cheating Uncle Sam.

U.S. law makes it a felony if you fail to declare the income from foreign investments on your U.S. tax return and makes it illegal to not disclose the existence of the foreign account.

So what is a person to do? Taxpayers can do nothing and hope they don't lose the "audit lottery" (there are no winners with the IRS). Or taxpayers can come into compliance, report the account and pay the government ¼ of the highest dollar amount that was in the account. That's right, if you had an account with $200,000 in it, get out the checkbook and write a check to the IRS for $50,000.

Taxpayers wanting to take advantage of the current amnesty program (called the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Initiative) must move quickly, however. Unlike the 2009 program, which simply said you had to apply be the deadline, the current amnesty requires that all missing forms ("FBAR's"), amended returns and payment must be made by the deadline. There is a great deal of paperwork involved with the new program, waiting until the last minute is a recipe for disaster.

Those that don't comply face prison and loss of 50% of their highest account value.

So what is the risk of getting caught? We think it is quite high.

Transparency within the international banking community is at an all time high. And the developed countries are exchanging information. That means if Germany obtains information about accounts in a Bermuda bank it will likely share that information with other countries.

The U.S. has been issuing "John Doe" subpoenas to foreign banks fishing for the names of American account holders. Countries like Germany have been bribing foreign bank officials to simply steal the information and turn it over.

Still not convinced? The IRS paid its first award under the new whistleblower program - $4.5 million to an accountant who reported his employer! If anyone, anywhere knows you have a foreign account; they may report you and keep a large percentage of what you pay.

The world suddenly got much smaller.



This is interesting article but I do not believe everything in it is correct. I have received numerous phone calls from participants in these plans and the IRS is auditing.  For the most accurate information contact: Lance Wallach at lancewallach.com or call 516-935-7346

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  2. Benistar419Audits.com
    Benistar
    Benistar 419 Plan
    Grist Mill Trust
    Nova
    Niche
    Sea Nine Veba
    SADI Trust
    Beta 419
    Millennium
    Bisys
    Creative Services Group
    Sterling Benefit Plan
    Compass 419
    Niche 419
    CRESP
    American Benefits Trust
    National Benefit Plan and Trust
    ABT
    Professional Benefits Trust
    Old Mutual
    Allmerica Financial
    American Heritage Life
    Commercial Union Life
    National Life of Vermont
    Old Line Life
    Security Mutual Life
    West Coast Life
    ECI Pension Services
    Pension Professionals of America
    ABI
    Hartford
    AIG
    Indy Life
    Indianapolis Life
    Advantage
    Jacksom National
    Jefferson-Pilot Life
    Lincoln Benefit Life
    Lincoln National Life
    Manufacturers Life
    Massachusetts Mutual
    Metropolitan Life
    Midland Life
    Minnesota Mutual
    Principal Life
    Reliastar
    Security Mutual
    USG Annuity & Life
    Western Reserve Life Assurance
    Old Mutual
    Allmerica Financial
    American Heritage Life
    Commercial Union Life
    National Life of Vermont
    Old Line Life
    Security Mutual Life
    West Coast Life

    ReplyDelete