TaxConnections


 

Archive for FBAR

Appeals Court Finally Affirms One Million Dollar FBAR Penalty

Ephraim Moss, Tax Attorney

In a rather swift and harsh judgment, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a lower court’s decision in favor of the IRS, which assessed an approximately $1.2 million penalty against a taxpayer for failing to disclose her financial interests in an overseas account.

The decision, U.S. v. Bussell, is noteworthy for two reasons. First, it shows the magnitude of penalty that can be reached, even with respect to an individual and a single foreign account and tax year (in this case, the relevant tax year was 2006). Second, it shows the type of taxpayer arguments that courts will likely reject when reviewing an FBAR penalty case. Read more

What Can We Learn From Paul Manafort’s Tax Problems?

Clinton Donnelly, Tax Advisor

What will the IRS do with Paul Manafort if the special prosecutor’s allegations are true? On October 30, 2017, the special prosecutor released an indictment against Paul Manafort, former campaign manager for President Trump, related to his actions as an unregistered agent of the Ukraine government. The prosecutors allege that Manafort had opened 16 foreign companies and conspired to money launder over $18 million of payment through these companies.

Read more

Green Card Holder Pleads Guilty of Failing to File FBAR and Report UBS Account, Will Pay More than Half the Assets in FBAR and Tax Penalties

William Byrnes, Tax Advisor

A Greenwich, Connecticut man pleaded guilty October 26, 2017, to failing to report funds he maintained in foreign bank accounts to the Department of Treasury, announced Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division, U.S. Attorney Dana J. Boente for the Eastern District of Virginia, and Chief Don Fort, IRS Criminal Investigation.

Read more

CPA Advice May Not Constitute Reasonable Cause

Taxpayers have been able to rely on advice from their accountants and CPAs to meet the complicated tax filing imposed by the U.S. Tax Code. But a case currently pending in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims suggests that CPA advice may not be enough to stop the IRS from assessing FBAR penalties for non-willful reporting violations.

A current case in the United States Court of Federal Claims, Jarnagin v United States, Docket No. 15-1534-T, shows what can happen when an unsuspecting taxpayer fails to file FBAR forms after providing all the requisite information regarding the foreign account to their accountant/CPA. Read more

U.S. Culture Of Penalty And Inflation

John Richardson

The purpose of this post is to explore how inflation results in the facilitation of enhanced penalty collection in America today.

What is inflation? “Inflation is defined as a sustained increase in the general level of prices for goods and services in a county, and is measured as an annual percentage change. Under conditions of inflation, the prices of things rise over time. Put differently, as inflation rises, every dollar you own buys a smaller percentage of a good or service. When prices rise, and alternatively when the value of money falls you have inflation.” Read more

FBAR In The Homeland: The Willful FBAR Penalty Requires Proof

John Richardson

This is one more in a series of posts discussing the FBAR rules. The FBAR rules were born in 1970, laid virtually dormant until the 2000s and then were then unleashed in their full “ferocity” on U.S. persons. 

Mr. FBAR has not visited Canada, but he has visited Canadian citizens Read more

Court Revisits Willful Requirement For Enhanced FBAR Penalties

A recent U.S. District court case has again shone a spotlight on the lack of a clear statutory or regulatory definition of “willful” for purposes of applying the more severe penalties for failure to file the FBAR.

In Bedrosian v. United States, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 56535 (ED PA 2017), the Court denied summary judgments by the both taxpayer and government on the issue of the taxpayer’s culpability in failing to report a Swiss bank account on a timely-filed FBAR.

Read more

Extended Due Date For Calendar Year Corp – What?

Annette Nellen

In 2015, Congress changed the due date for several types of entities as well as for the FBAR (for foreign financial accounts). The AICPA has a wonderful chart with all of the new dates noted.

When Congress made the changes for C corporations, they apparently had a concern with a change that would move a due date from one government fiscal year into the next fiscal year. The federal government’s fiscal year ends September 30.

Read more

Be Careful What You “Fix For” – Mr. Kentera Meets Mr. FBAR

John Richardson

The “unfiled FBAR” continues to be a problem for certain Homeland Americans with “offshore accounts” and all Americans abroad, who continue to “commit personal finance abroad”.

Introducing Mr. and Mrs. Kentara

Read more

Court Finds Couple Willfully Failed To File FBAR

Ephraim Moss

If you thought FBAR penalties were more bark than bite, a recent U.S. District court case is sure to change your mind.

In United States v. August Bohanec et ux, USDC CD Ca., No. 2:15-cv-04347 (December 2016), the Court found that the taxpayer’s failure to file the FBAR was willful and affirmed the IRS’s enhanced FBAR civil penalty, i.e., a fine equal to the greater of $100,000 or 50% of the balance in their unreported accounts.

Read more

A Holiday Gift: What To Do About The Unfiled FBAR – Part 1

John Richardson

I suspect that history will show that that the growth in renunciations of U.S. citizenship (and abandonment of Green Cards) continued in 2016. Absent a change in the way that the United States treats its “U.S. Persons Abroad”, I suspect that the growth in renunciations of U.S. citizenship will continue.

The purpose of this post and a short summary:

Read more

Recklessness = Willful Failure To File FBAR

Ron Marini

A district court has found that the taxpayers’ failure to timely file a Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts Report (FBAR) was willful where, among other things, they stopped employing a bookkeeper or keeping any books after opening a foreign bank account and made several misrepresentations under penalty of perjury when they applied to participate in IRS’s Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (OVDP).

Read more

TaxConnections