Missouri Tax Fraud Lawyer
Taking the Fear Out of Allegations of Tax Fraud
Allegations of tax fraud can get you into a lot of trouble –– in both criminal and civil courts. If found guilty in the former and liable in the latter, you can expect the possibility of incarceration and large fines. Tax fraud is serious, and so you are right to be worried if you are the subject of this type of accusation. If you know you are under investigation or have been charged or sued, the fear you feel is enough to send you into hiding. However, with your Cape Girardeau tax fraud lawyer, you do not have to worry about these things on your own. With the right strategies, you can avoid tax fraud allegations altogether.
At Birk Law Firm, our tax fraud lawyer will act proactively to help you address any tax issues you may have or might think you have. If allegations of tax fraud have already been filed, we will carefully review your case and guide you through the process. We will be swift and thorough in our response to the Missouri Department of Revenue (DOR) or the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Call us today at 573-332-8585 to schedule a free initial consultation and find out why Birk Law Firm is trusted by your community members throughout Cape Girardeau.
Why Choose our Tax Fraud Lawyer
Maximum Benefits to Safeguard your Financial Interests
Tax fraud is a big deal. Sometimes it is deliberate, while other times it is a matter of making unintentional errors. Either way, it can lead to serious fines and even time in prison. In the long-run, tax fraud can cost you more than you ever thought a shortcut here or there could save you. So, if it is financial interests you seek to protect, consider strategies for tax avoidance – not fraud.
Our tax fraud lawyer can help you with these types of strategies. On the other hand, if it is an honest mistake that led to tax fraud charges, it really is not tax fraud, but you must persuade the government of the same.
As a business and tax law attorney and a Certified Public Accountant (CPA), we offer unique services to our clients. Here are a few good reasons why you should hire us regardless of whether you come to us about your personal taxes, business taxes, or both.
- We are client-driven. Our business is to make your life easier, with less stress and more financial freedom. Our accounting and legal services are driven by a passion to help our clients, and, in return, our clients often testify to the quality of our services.
- We get results. We are creative and use extensive experience in law and accounting to provide the best services that maximize chances for positive outcomes.
- We are experienced. Attorney Kelvin Birk has 50 years of combined experience in accounting and the law – particularly business law and tax law.
- We have built a network. We have a network of people and resources that complement our legal and accounting services.
- We negotiate. If you are investigated for, charged with, or sued for tax fraud, you need a good negotiator to help prevent charges or keep a lawsuit from going any further than the initial steps.
- We offer free initial consultations. We know you are already worried about money. We offer a free initial consultation with no obligations attached. This helps us get to know you and your situation as well as helping you get to know us.
Most accountants are not lawyers. Most lawyers are not accountants. Luckily, Kelvin Birk is both, and he employs these disciplines to help his clients effectively fight allegations of tax fraud or to prevent the same.
How Our Cape Girardeau Tax Fraud Lawyer Can Help
While Keeping in Mind that Time is of the Essence
If you are being investigated for, charged with, or sued for tax fraud, timing is critical. You must respond appropriately and strategically within the time frame allowed by law. Trying to avoid the issue will only make matters worse.
By being proactive, however, you can help frame the issue in a better light. We can get started first by confirming whether the tax fraud suspicions, or accusations, are truly based on your carelessness or misunderstanding of state and federal tax laws. If it is an honest mistake on your part, then we can collect the documentation and put forth a strong explanation and negotiate how to best solve the matter. We can also offer guidance and protect your constitutional rights if you or someone else deliberately misled or made fraudulent statements that impacted your tax returns.
Contact us immediately for a free consultation. We will discuss your tax fraud matter and, if appropriate, intervene promptly to prevent a criminal prosecution or lawsuit from proceeding. We will be persistent and negotiate a payment plan or tax settlement to which all parties agree.
Tax Fraud FAQs
When the state or the federal government pursues tax fraud cases, they do it with the backing of all their support staff, lawyers, and resources. It is critical that you have smart, resourceful representation to protect your interests; trying to fight the government on your own can only increase the stakes.
At Birk Law Firm, we are diligent and thorough in our representation. We have the experience that allows us to see these types of issues from all angles, which allows us to provide creative, more effective representation.
We also know that informed clients make better decisions for themselves. So, alongside the CPA and legal services we provide, we also make sure you understand the process. Here are some of the most common questions we receive initially when tax fraud becomes a concern. To get more specific answers, it is always best to call our tax fraud attorney in Cape Girardeau at 573-332-8585 to schedule a free initial consultation.
Tax fraud is an umbrella term used to refer to a number of different unlawful activities related to taxes. It is generally more than a mere mistake, meaning you must have intended to escape tax obligations by lying on tax forms, falsifying statements, transferring assets to hide them, or otherwise taking action to avoid the assessment or payment of taxes.
The important aspect of tax fraud is your mental state: Did you willfully or intentionally commit acts to avoid paying taxes?
The difference between tax fraud and tax evasion is this: Tax fraud applies more generally to illegal activity involving taxes, while tax evasion is one type of tax fraud. Tax evasion occurs when a person attempts to evade taxes by, for example, dodging a tax assessment or payment of tax. So, tax evasion falls under the umbrella of tax fraud.
Tax fraud and tax evasion are unlawful activities, while tax avoidance is a lawful means to avoid paying taxes. Tax avoidance is usually done by using tax deductions and other loopholes to your benefit — for example, making sure you claim all the credits to which you are entitled or donating money to a charity of your choice.
The key difference, therefore, is this: Tax fraud and tax evasion are unlawful ways to avoid paying taxes, while tax avoidance refers to lawful ways to the same end. At Birk Law Firm, we can help you identify and employ all the legal strategies available to you to limit the taxes you pay.
Anyone can be suspected of tax fraud, and that includes individuals and businesses, organizations, and other entities. Some situations where a person or company may find themselves facing tax fraud include:
- The IRS accuses a tax preparer of doctoring tax returns to create greater gains for their clients.
- The IRS accuses a person of falsely preparing their own tax return or failing to file one when they should have.
- The Missouri Department of Revenue may accuse a taxpayer of failing to report freelance work or claiming personal expenses as business expenses.
- The Missouri Department of Revenue may accuse a taxpayer of concealing assets or exaggerating the amount of deductions.
- The IRS may accuse a small business of failing to pay employee withholdings by falsifying records or keeping two sets of books.
Typically, tax fraud cases start with a tax audit. Audits can lead to errors that the taxpayer may have knowingly and willingly committed. Further, audits can uncover patterns of this kind of behavior by the taxpayer or entity.
At Birk Law Firm, we offer accounting services and legal services in tax and business law. We know what triggers audits and can proactively help you avoid them.
The consequences of tax fraud are many. They are criminal, civil, and collateral. If the DOR or the IRS comes after you for tax fraud and succeeds at a criminal conviction, you could be facing steep fines and years in prison.
Missouri State penalties pursuant to Title X, Taxation and Revenue, Missouri Revised Statute § 143.911, outlines potential penalties as:
- Up to $10,000 in fines; and/or
- Up to one year in the county jail; or
- Between two and five years in the state penitentiary; and
- Cost of prosecution.
Federally, pursuant to 26 U.S.C. § 7201, you can face harsher penalties, including but not limited to:
- Up to $100,000 in fines for individuals; or
- Up to $500,000 in fines for corporations; and/or
- Up to five years in federal prison.
You can also face civil penalties – either civil fraud penalty or an accuracy-related penalty. 26 U.S.C. § 6663 imposes a civil fraud penalty of 75% of the portion of underpayment that is due to fraud. Alternatively, an accuracy-related penalty could be imposed (not both). Pursuant to 26 U.S.C. § 6662, a 20% penalty could apply to:
- Disregard of rules or regulations
- Substantial understatement of income tax
- Substantial valuation misstatement
- Substantial overstatement of pension liabilities
- Substantial estate or gift tax valuation understatement
- Disallowance of claimed tax benefits by reason of a transaction lacking economic substance or failing to meet the requirements of any similar rule of law
- Undisclosed foreign financial asset understatement
- Inconsistent estate basis.
Collaterally speaking, even the suggestion of tax fraud can look bad for you, but to face charges or a lawsuit is much different. Your reputation in the community can be harmed. Your business – if you have one – can suffer reputational losses. If you are an individual and are charged and convicted, you could lose a professional license and certain constitutional rights, like the right to vote or possess and use a firearm, both of which are stripped if you are convicted of a felony. A conviction can also impact your career or employment.
As you can see, tax fraud can lead to very dire situations. Get help now so that we can start addressing the issues before they become a problem.
Contact a Smart, Strategic Tax Fraud Attorney in Cape Girardeau Today
State and federal tax codes are overly complicated, even though there have been movements to simplify them. Without a background in tax law or accounting, it can be difficult to strictly comply with the codes. In fact, it is hard for many professional accountants to adhere to tax codes for some of their larger clients. Failing to comply can lead to investigations and legal woes with either or both the IRS and the DOR.
Make sure you do taxes right. Mistakes can be costly. If it’s protecting your assets you want, there are legal ways to do so. Kelvin Birk, as both a CPA and tax lawyer, will discuss your tax situation with you and come up with smart, proactive strategies. Plus, we can make sure, year after year, that your taxes are filed timely and properly. With Birk Law Firm, you get the benefit of a CPA’s insight coupled with the knowledge of a business and tax law attorney. Contact us today at 573-332-8585 to schedule a free initial consultation.
ALL YOUR LEGAL NEEDS
Why Choose Birk Law?
Birk Law Firm is a small firm by choice that is big on client services. Attorney Kelvin Birk and his team are responsive to their clients’ needs. When we sign on as your law firm, you can count on us for strong legal counsel, from negotiations to settlement to trial.
Our clients benefit from the intertwining of Kelvin Birk’s legal and CPA background and experience. We provide well-rounded advice to solve both legal and financial issues and to come up with creative solutions. We use modern technology to deliver legal services in a more efficient and client-focused manner than was previously possible.
We provide personalized and compassionate service. We believe that each client’s matter is the most important matter in the world to them, and we strive to treat it that way.