The current state of the economy, an incumbent president with an active agenda, new offshore reporting requirements, as well as other recent changes will make 2014 a pivotal year for taxpayers.
A. More Tax Audits and More IRS Scrutiny
In addition to raising taxes, at every level (local, state and federal) governments are more aggressively enforcing tax laws, tightening or closing loopholes and pursuing tax evaders. The IRS is stepping up its investigations of possible tax abuse and tax evasion, pursuing improper “tax shelters” and other abusive transactions, and increasing audits and tax investigations. In 2013, more reports emerged that the IRS was using Facebook, other social media sites and Google Earth in investigating taxpayers.
What should you do?
First, work with competent, experienced tax counsel, who utilize proven, tax-complaint strategies.
Second, have tax counsel conduct a “friendly audit” – review your financial activities, bookkeeping and record keeping procedures, and accounting practices to uncover and correct sensitive areas before they are discovered in an IRS audit. Become essentially “audit proof”.
We have earned a reputation for experience, expertise and creativity in the development of sophisticated tax-complaint domestic and offshore tax strategies, designed to maximize asset preservation and to minimize taxes. We have been instrumental in the development of creative, tax compliant domestic and offshore strategies for the elimination, deferral or minimization of capital gains tax, income tax and estate tax.
If you are being audited or investigated by the IRS or a state tax authority, hire legal counsel with a proven track record of success against the government.
Rubinstein & Rubinstein, LLP has been advocating on behalf of taxpayers for more than twenty years. Our attorneys have a combined half century of tax experience in representing clients before the IRS and before state tax departments.
B. Continued IRS Offensive Against Non-Compliant Foreign Accounts
Following its success against foreign banks and foreign banking secrecy (see 2013 Year End Notes, Part 3), we expect the IRS in 2014 to continue to pursue offshore tax fraud investigations of many foreign banks in many foreign countries. We also expect DOJ to continue its prosecution of U.S. taxpayers with non-compliant foreign assets. If you have a non-compliant or undeclared foreign asset, we can help you bring it into compliance. If you are being investigated by the IRS, we can represent you, defend you and negotiate for lower fines and penalties and for civil, rather than criminal, prosecution.
C. The Legacy of Unsustainable National Debt and Government Deficits
Many citizens are very concerned about the legacy of burdensome national debt and deficits that the government is forcing them to leave to their children and grandchildren. They ask us what they can do. Our answer is: continue to work hard, but legally protect your profits from burdensome income taxes and protect your wealth from burdensome estate taxes. Leave your children and grandchildren a legacy of wealth that will shield them from future economic events. We can help you keep as much as possible and pass it on to your family in a tax compliant manner. We can also help you diversify your assets geographically and create a “nest egg” offshore that will be protected from future U.S. developments.
D. The Affordable Care Act (“Obamacare”)
Beginning in 2013, a 3.8% tax on net investment income was imposed in order to fund Obamacare. In addition, Congress has mandated that the IRS get into the healthcare business because the IRS has been appointed to collect payments under the Act. In addition, the IRS has also been given an extra $500 million to enforce the rules and regulations of Obamacare.
What this means for you: yet more fees, payments, calculations and documentation under IRS scrutiny, and more potential for audits, examinations and penalties. Proactive preventive strategies are the best way to protect yourself from the prospect of increased government intrusion.
Please contact us to discuss any of the above.