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Federal Tax Fraud
Federal tax fraud occurs when a taxpayer intentionally refuses to pay lawfully due taxes. This offense has both civil and criminal consequences under the Internal Revenue Code and the United States Code, respectively.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) aggressively prosecutes tax fraud, because tax revenues are vital to the government’s ability to fund its operations and programs, and strong prosecution is considered a to be a tax-fraud deterrent.
If the IRS investigates or arrests you on a federal tax fraud violation, legal representation becomes an imperative. Seek legal counsel immediately. Convictions result in long prison sentences, six-figure fines, and interest on unpaid taxes that can accrue without limit. In addition, you can be made to fund your own prosecution.
Civil penalties include paying the lawful tax and associated penalties. Criminal convictions, on the other hand, are punishable by steep fines and significant terms of incarceration in federal prison. Federal tax fraud is not taken lightly by any means, and if you are accused of federal tax fraud, you should seek legal counsel immediately.
Types of Federal Tax Fraud
There are many ways that it can be proven that you intentionally filed a fraudulent tax return including:
- Not filing a return
- Not reporting income
- Acquiring assets in the names of other people, corporations, trusts or other third parties
- Operation of a cash business without accurate bookkeeping
Federal tax fraud is a serious offense so it is very important to search for an experienced attorney with a good understanding of the laws regarding federal tax fraud.
Should I Hire a Federal Tax Fraud Attorney?
Federal income tax regulations and statutes consist of thousands of pages and are extremely complicated. You may have heard that tax loopholes exist, which serve to further complicate matters.
This is a highly specialized area of law requiring extensive research and an attorney who is well-versed in federal tax law. The right attorney will also have a proven track record of cases in which he or she defended individuals charged with federal tax fraud. Having an experienced and professional attorney by your side is crucial if you want to prevail.
Everyone knows that federal tax laws are complicated and confusing. But a defense attorney experienced in criminal tax law will:
- Explain the charge you are facing.
- Tell you how the criminal justice system works.
- Analize the alternatives available to you.
- Challenge the evidence against you.
These services will help you make informed and intelligent decisions about how to proceed.
What Does a Federal Tax Fraud Attorney Do?
In a criminal complaint, the government takes on the burden of proving, beyond a reasonable doubt, that you knowingly and intentionally committed tax fraud – a very difficult feat, to say the least. Thus, your attorney will typical build your defense around proof that you did not intentionally or knowingly fail to pay the taxes, in order to establish reasonable doubt.
Your federal tax fraud attorney will review evidence and find witnesses to support your case, while challenging and weakening the government’s argument using various defense tools like suppressing government evidence.
In federal tax fraud cases, the government may choose to take civil action rather than prosecute criminally. In a civil action lawsuit, the burden of proof is reduced to a preponderance of the evidence, usually equating to 49 versus 51 percent. Generally, your attorney will work to develop evidence to swing the preponderance of evidence to your favor and challenge the IRS’s evidence.
The IRS also may choose a strategy to show you simply underpaid your taxes, releasing you of a fraud allegation. Therefore, to defeat the government, your attorney will look for a valid reason why you did not pay the tax.
Click to learn about Federal Tax Fraud Law on LawInfo.