Tax revenue is a vital part of funding state, local, and federal governments. For that reason, government entities have the capacity to carry out extensive investigations to identify fraud and ensure taxpayers are paying what is owed. If you are an individual or a business that is facing an audit or investigation from the IRS, or you wish to come into compliance in the cleanest way possible, a skilled tax lawyer could help.
Tax laws can impact your life in a variety of ways. From reporting and compliance issues to audits and appeals, there are many circumstances where you could benefit from the guidance of a Vienna tax attorney. Call us about our services if you have in excess of $50,000 at issue.
One of the top priorities for the IRS is to investigate suspected instances of tax fraud or evasion. Tax fraud is something more substantial than merely forgetting to file a return or underpaying on the amount of taxes that were owed. Tax fraud is a knowing or intentional effort to evade the tax debt that a person owes.
There are both civil and criminal penalties that can come into play in the event of tax fraud. While civil fraud could result in significant financial penalties, criminal charges have the potential for jail time or significant fines. It is worth noting that allegations of tax fraud or evasion do not always result in these consequences. A tax attorney in Vienna could help a taxpayer carefully resolve the issue with the IRS in order to stave off the possibility of criminal charges.
An audit is one of the primary tools at the disposal of the IRS. For some taxpayers, this process might end up just being an inconvenience. For others, it could be the first step leading toward a criminal investigation.
The outcome of an audit is not set in stone. Taxpayers that are unhappy with the results of the audit have the right to seek an appeal. These appeals are handled internally within the IRS. However, the department that oversees appeals is separated from the agents that made the initial audit decision.
An appeal has the potential to successfully resolve an issue with an IRS and avoid criminal consequences. A Vienna tax lawyer could assist with reviewing an audit and planning how to make an appeal. In some cases, an attorney could see if the taxpayer is eligible for penalty abatement.
When it comes to enforcement actions, the IRS routinely relies on both liens and levies to pressure taxpayers into fulfilling their tax obligations. While these legal collection efforts are similar, there are differences that are worth noting.
A lien is a type of legal claim that targets a taxpayer’s property. Until the tax debt is paid, the lien remains in place. Prospective buyers will have access to records of the lien, which prevents the taxpayer from selling the property without first resolving the tax debt.
Levies go a step further. Instead of making a legal claim on a taxpayer’s property, a levy seizes that property directly. Levies are commonly placed on bank accounts. The IRS has the power to implement a levy without the taxpayer’s consent. A highly knowledgeable lawyer could assist someone in resolving a lien or levy.
There are many complex tax issues that could impact your finances if you do not address them in a timely manner. Complying with federal tax law could help you avoid an audit or the criminal proceedings that could come after. You do not have to take on your tax-related challenges on your own. To get the help you need, contact a Vienna tax attorney and learn what you need to do to satisfy your tax debt.
Pontius Tax Law, PLLC is a tax law firm that strives to resolve sensitive tax problems through trust, dedication and value. The law firm was founded by John Pontius with offices in Washington, DC, Rockville, MD, Bethesda, MD, Vienna, VA, and Alexandria, VA. Mr. Pontius represents individual and business clients with sensitive and serious tax matters before the Internal Revenue Service and state taxing authorities. His client base is local, national, and international.
Over the course of his career, Mr. Pontius has represented businesses and individuals with complex tax issues in the following areas: FBAR examinations, offshore and domestic disclosures, FATCA, FIRPTA, tax planning, unfiled tax returns, release of tax liens and levies, trust fund recovery penalty, IRS and state audit examinations, as well as appeals, penalty abatement, U.S. Tax Court litigation, along with defense of tax fraud and evasion. If you require assistance from a tax lawyer, contact Mr. Pontius to discuss your situation.