The Internal Revenue Service takes tax evasion very seriously. Every year, thousands of tax crime investigations are launched against American taxpayers. About half of these investigations end in criminal convictions. More than 80% of tax-related criminal convictions involve prison sentences, and many of these sentences exceed three years. If you’re under investigation by the IRS or have been charged with tax evasion, call a lawyer from Okabe & Haushalter as soon as possible. We want to help you stand up for your rights so that you can avoid a tax crime conviction. Why it IRS so skeptical of offshore accounts? Many countries offer American taxpayers the opportunity to store their money overseas without the knowledge of the IRS.
This is a form of tax evasion and is illegal. Keeping money in a foreign bank account is not illegal – that’s why we’re devoted to helping people like you when the IRS investigates them for having an offshore account. In short, offshore accounts enable taxpayers to keep a portion of their funds hidden. Many countries (called a tax to havens) allow people to store their money confidentially and some have laws that support anonymous banking to encourage tax evasion. At the firm, we understand that the IRS may become overzealous when pursuing tax evasion convictions; just because you have an offshore account doesn’t mean you are guilty. If you need help, call our office today.
If convicted of tax evasion, you may be sentenced to five years in federal prison. Additionally, you may have to pay a $250,000 fine. Many offshore account schemes involve business transactions and fraudulent, offshore companies. If your business is convicted of tax evasion because of a foreign account, this fine may be elevated to $500,000. These penalties are severe. If you’re under investigation because of a foreign account, don’t wait until it’s too late – call our office today and talk to one of our lawyers. The sooner we hear from you, the sooner we can begin creating an effective strategy to keep your record clean.
According to the IRS, an offshore account is any bank account in a foreign country or jurisdiction that offers American taxpayers financial secrecy. In short, these countries and jurisdictions attempt to attract foreign business investments by making it easier for foreign bankers to commit tax evasion. Because of this, the IRS is highly suspicious of offshore financial activity. Financial secrecy refers to a level of confidentiality. Offshore accounts can be managed anonymously; many times, only the top officials of the bank know who is in control of the money.
Tax havens are also used to avoid tax payments. A tax haven is a country or jurisdiction that provides foreign bankers (such as U.S. taxpayers) a tax-free or low-tax environment. Even the United States is considered a tax haven to some countries. Tax haven countries encourage foreign investors and may be used by taxpayers in various offshore tax evasion schemes. If the IRS suspects that you are using an offshore account to commit tax evasion, you will be audited. During this process, your tax records will be examined and the IRS will attempt to demonstrate that you have committed a tax-related crime.
If the IRS discovers reasonable evidence to press charges, you may face allegations of tax evasion, tax fraud or another serious crime. Call our office today to see how we can help you avoid a conviction. At Okabe & Haushalter, our white collar crime lawyers want to make sure that your rights are protected during the audit process and, if you are charged, fight for your freedom when your case goes to court. If convicted, you may never be able to escape the stigma of a tax-crime conviction. Let an attorney from the firm give you peace of mind knowing that your case is being handled by an experienced, reliable and dedicated criminal defense lawyer.