When a person is suspected of committing a tax crime of any sort, not only
will he or she be staring down the strength of law enforcement agencies,
but the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will also put a hand into the investigation.
IRS audits are notoriously thorough and intimidating, a process that no
one wants to imagine. With so much force backing a potential prosecution,
it can be easy to get nervous, make a mistake, and lose track of the time.
But if you have found yourself in such a precarious situation, it is crucial
that you keep a level head and know what to do to protect yourself, your
finances, your reputation, and your freedom.
If you are being audited by the IRS for a suspected tax crime:
Double-check the notification: The IRS sends out completely random audits all the time to ensure the average
citizen is completing their taxes correctly, and that the agency is efficient.
Before you jump to conclusions, take a moment to review any notifications
you got from the IRS. Is it a random audit, or have they specifically
noted that you are suspected of committing tax evasion? If you are not
sure, you may want to contact the IRS for clarity.
Call a lawyer: As soon as you know for certain you are seen as a tax fraud suspect, you
need to view the situation as you would any other criminal defense case
and get in touch with a tax crime attorney. The federal government is
going to be on the other side of the courtroom. Make certain you have
done everything you can to gain an advantage, which means working with
a legal professional on your defense from the beginning.
Collect years of paperwork: The IRS will typically not go back further than three years when conducting
any sort of audit. However, for a serious tax crime investigation, the
IRS can delve back a full six years. To be safe, get your own copies of
your tax filings and information for the last six years. This might require
some hefty binders or data digging but, once again, your top priority
should be doing whatever it takes to clear your name.
Cooperate: Do not try to make it intentionally difficult for the IRS to complete
its audit, and
never intentionally hide information or lie. Have a discussion with your attorney
about what you should and should not be doing to cooperate with the auditors
or investigators. Being friendly can help win their favor, but being too
useful can sabotage your own case.
Stay quiet: Keep in mind that your IRS tax audit could easily transition to –
or already be a part of – a criminal investigation. Do not talk
to anyone representing a government agency while your audit is being conducted,
as they might be fishing for evidence to use against you. Direct any questions
to your criminal defense attorney.
Blumenthal Law Offices is well-versed in federal- and state-level tax laws.
If you are targeted by an IRS audit linked to a criminal investigation,
contact our Riverside criminal defense attorney at your first opportunity. There is no time to lose.