About Tax Preparer Penalty Audits

About Tax Preparer Penalty Audits

The IRS’s power to regulate tax return preparers was limited by the Loving v. Internal Revenue Service, 742 F.3d 1013 (D.C. Cir. 2014) line of cases. These cases generally limit the IRS’s ability to regulate tax preparer conduct at an administrative level. But the IRS still has a number of tools at its disposal to…

Timing for Written IRS Manager Approval for Penalties

Timing For Written Irs Manager Approval For Penalties

The courts recently held that penalties have to be abated if the IRS does not obtain written manager approval for the penalties. The IRS has been abating penalties for this since the ruling. But there is a question as to when does the IRS have to obtain manager approval? Is it sufficient that the IRS…

Foreign Trust Beneficiary Liable for a Double Tax Penalty?

Foreign Trust Beneficiary Liable For A Double Tax Penalty?

Can the sole owner of a foreign trust who is also its sole beneficiary be penalized twice for not filing a single Form 3520? Can the IRS choose the higher penalty for the beneficiary in this situation? In Wilson v. United States, No. 19-cv-5037 (BMC) (E.D.N.Y. 2019), the IRS argued that it could impose pick…

Reasonable Cause: Proving Reliance on a Tax Advisor

The Importance Of Accounting For C Corporation Expenses

If you hire a competent tax advisor and end up having a late filed return, you may be able to avoid penalties for the late filing. But this is a defense. It is something that you, the taxpayer, have to prove. So how does a taxpayer prove that they relied on a tax advsior? The…

Is Reliance on a CPA Sufficient for a Late Filed Tax Form?

Raising A Tax Issue For The First Time In Court

The IRS often turns a deaf ear to taxpayers who miss a filing deadline due to some action or inaction by their CPA or tax preparer. This is the case for late filing tax penalties. But what about a late filed accounting method change? Is reliance on a CPA or tax preparer sufficient for a…

CPA Penalized for Knowledge of Understatement

Can The Irs Get Records From Foreign Corps That Do Business In The U.s.?

Section 6701 imposes a penalty for assisting another person in understating their tax liability. The Section 6701 penalty is not subject to a statute of limitations. The IRS can assess these penalties at any time, even years and decades after the fact. This can result in very large penalty assessments for those who prepare tax…

Return Preparer Liable for Returns She Didn’t Prepare

Tax Litigation When The Administrative Process Failed

The IRS has been increasing its focus on tax return preparers who file false or fraudulent tax returns. Congress recently beefed up the due diligence requirements preparers have to comply with and the penalty amounts have also been increased. But these laws only apply to tax returns the preparer actually prepared. In Tolentino v. United…

Is IRS Manger Approval Required for Computer Generated Penalties?

Is Irs Manger Approval Required For Computer Generated Penalties?

The IRS and the courts have invalidated penalties where the IRS fails to obtain IRS manager approval before assessing the penalty. It has done so in cases where the penalties are manually assessed by IRS personnel. But what about penalties that are automatically assessed by the IRS’s computers? The court addresses this in Atl &…

Loaning Money to Business Triggers Trust Fund Penalty

Court Says Partnership Is Worth Less, Not Entirely Worthless

You work hard to build a business, you find success over the years, and then you find out that your long term accountant did not remit payroll taxes and you owe a significant balance.  What do you do?  The recent McClendon v. United States, No. 17-20174 (5th Cir. 2018) case provides some answers. The Facts & Procedural…

Court Rejects the ‘Taking All Necessary Steps’ Defense to Penalties

Some Filing Deadlines Are Strict, Others Are Not

If you take all of the steps to prepare and remit a tax return to the IRS except for placing it in the mail, is this sufficient to avoid a failure to timely file penalty?  There is case law suggesting that it may be in some circumstances.  The U.S. Tax Court recently addressed this in…