Los Angeles Tax Evasion Defense Lawyers
Every year, the federal government loses upwards of $1 trillion due to tax evasion. Facing that level of financial loss, it’s not surprising that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) takes tax evasion seriously and that are significant criminal penalties that come with conviction. There is, however, a difference between being charged with tax evasion and actually being guilty of tax evasion. And even within the framework of acknowledged guilt there is a wide range of possible penalties. A tax evasion defense lawyer has the task of first making the IRS prove its case.
When you’re being investigated by the IRS, reach out to a Los Angeles-area tax evasion attorney from our office. Call today at (818) 918-5838 or contact us online for a consultation.
How Tax Evasion Works
Taxes might be illegally evaded any number of ways that go beyond a simple refusal to file on April 15. It’s also possible that someone might understate their income or overstate their deductions. Certain business transactions might be conducted in cash, and that income is never reported. Taxable income might be illegally concealed in an offshore account.
Hypothetical examples abound. The person who hires a housekeeper is welcome to pay them in cash if that makes it easier. But that income still has to be reported on both ends and the person who did the hiring needs to file a W-2 with appropriate payroll taxes accounted for. Failure to do this amounts to tax evasion.
Some nations abroad have lighter to non-existent oversight of their banking systems. Individuals with a certain level of financial savvy might set up an account in these countries, shift money there and keep it hidden from the IRS’ purview.
Businesses have a number of deductions available to them. It’s common and perfectly legal to be aggressive in making use of these deductions. It’s also possible that in doing so, someone steps over the line and claims deductions they shouldn’t. This can also apply to individuals who have a diverse financial portfolio and a lot of legitimate deductions…but then go a bridge too far.
The IRS typically has three years to audit a return and then three years after that to bring a charge of tax evasion. If that timeframe is met, they can bring a charge of tax evasion.
Penalties for Tax Evasion
Tax evasion is punishable by both the IRS and the State of California. At the federal level, Section 7201 of the IRS Code outlines a penalty structure of fines that go up to $100,000 for an individual or $500,000 for a corporation. Jail time can be as long as five years and the convicted person might be reimbursing the government for the costs of the prosecution.
The failure to pay California taxes is punishable by up to a year in prison and the fine maxes out at $20,000.
So, taken together, a person convicted a tax evasion faces a combined six years in prison and fines that may exceed a half-million dollars. That’s to say nothing of the liens that may follow for those who can’t pay, the loss of reputation and the stain on one’s record.
That’s why legal defense attorneys are here.
Get help from a Los Angeles-area tax evasion lawyer from our office for your defense. Call us today at (818) 918-5838 or contact us online.
Complex tax returns invite the possibility of mistakes, and the IRS is not above making those mistakes. One way for the defense to begin is to simply prove that the IRS is wrong about their claims of unpaid taxes .
Furthermore, even if the mistake is on the part of the accused, a mistake is not a criminal offense. Intent is a necessary precondition of tax evasion. It’s the prosecution’s job to prove malice on the part of the accused. This requires a whole set of proof that goes beyond any problems with the tax returns themselves .
For example, a defendant who created a new Social Security number might have problems. But the person who claimed several deductions that did not apply, might have been acting in good faith. Furthermore, if they acted on the advice of their accountant, the case for intent is further weakened.
A good tax evasion defense attorney understands what constitutes the burden of proof on the prosecution’s side and then works diligently to protect their clients’ rights and fight for their interests in court. Your tax evasion defense lawyer will be well-connected with financial experts, including forensic analysts who may be able to question the legitimacy of the IRS’ case against you.
Shevin Law Group brings a studious approach to the law and a tenacious fighting spirit to our cases. Our clients have their income, their reputation and quite possibly their very freedom on the line and we are committed to giving them the vigorous defense they deserve.
If you need help in a tax evasion case, call us today at (818) 918-5838 or contact us online to set up an initial consultation.
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