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Not So Fast, IRS…My Client Wasn’t Aware: Marinello v. United States

In Popular Posts, Willfulness by freemanlawdevLeave a Comment

In Marinello v. United States,[1] the Supreme Court recently addressed the scope of section 7212(a) of the Internal Revenue Code. This section describes the conviction and punishment of taxpayers who engage in corrupt or forcible interference with the administration of the internal revenue laws.[2] In its opinion, the Supreme Court restricted the scope of the statute, holding that in order …

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IRS Required to Return FBAR “Penalty:” Penalty was “Illegally Exacted”

In Bank Secrecy Act, FBAR, White Collar, Willfulness by Jason B. FreemanLeave a Comment

The much-anticipated decision in Bedrosian v. United States was released on Wednesday of this week, and it did not fail to disappoint—unless, of course, you find yourself on the latter side of the “v” in the case caption.  The case presented a fundamental FBAR issue: was Bedrosian’s failure to report his foreign account “willful?”  If it was, he would have …

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Department of Justice Issues Warning on the Eve of Tax Deadline: Willful Tax Violators Face Prosecution

In Criminal, Willfulness by Jason B. FreemanLeave a Comment

The Department of Justice issued a public warning to taxpayers on the eve of this year’s tax filing deadline: Tax fraud carries serious consequences.  In a press release highlighting its recent criminal tax enforcement efforts, the DOJ warned that taxpayers who attempt to violate the federal tax laws should think twice and may face prosecution, prison and monetary fines and restitution. …

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How the FBAR’s “Willfulness” Element Has Recently Evolved

In FBAR, White Collar, Willfulness by freemanlawdevLeave a Comment

The FBAR (FinCEN Form 114) requires United States persons to report any foreign financial accounts in which the person has signatory authority or a financial interest if the total value of such accounts exceeds $10,000.[1] In 2004, the IRS obtained the ability to impose non-willful civil penalties against those persons that fail to report such foreign accounts. Prior to that, …

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Litigating FBAR Penalties: The Burden of Proof and the Meaning of Willfulness

In Bank Secrecy Act, Defenses, FBAR, Tax Litigation, White Collar, Willfulness by Jason B. FreemanLeave a Comment

The recent case of United States v. Bohanec, 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 170149 (Dec. 8, 2016) provides the latest glimpse into the world of FBAR penalty litigation. Among other things, the case looks at two interesting and important procedural issues: the meaning of willfulness and the burden of proof necessary to prove it. In Bohanec, the government asserted a penalty …