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Guindon: SCC Hears Arguments in Penalty Case

The Supreme Court of Canada heard oral arguments today in the case of Guindon v. The Queen (Docket No. 35519). At issue in the case is the nature of the third-party penalty in section 163.2 of the Income Tax Act....more

Last NC Law Changes of 2014 - just in time for the holidays

Although the NC General Assembly adjourned last summer it is customary to allow some laws that require lead time for implementation to go into effect on December 1st. The following is a list of NC laws that are new today...more

U.S. v. Ganias: Second Circuit Limits Government’s Ability to Use Electronic Material Seized Beyond Scope of Warrant for Different...

In a recent decision that provides important guidance in the developing law related to government seizure of electronic records in criminal investigations, on June 17, 2014, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second...more

FBAR Penalty to Face Excessive Fines Clause Test

Last week, a federal jury in Miami found that Carl Zwerner had willfully failed to disclose his foreign bank account to the Treasury Department for calendar years 2004, 2005 and 2006. Zwerner now potentially owes the United...more

IRS Sharpens Its Sword Of Damacles

In a jury verdict this wake in the Southern District of Florida, the IRS has a sharpened Sword of Damacles to hang over the head of FBAR reporting violators. In U.S. v. Zwerner, a jury found that Carl Zwerner WILLFULLY failed...more

When Keeping Silent Can Be Used Against You

Prior constitutional law, as well as popular culture via crime shows on TV, inform us that a suspect can keep silent and that silence cannot be used against him in a criminal proceeding. This has been generally true, but a...more

SCC Grants Leave To Appeal In Guindon v. The Queen

The Supreme Court of Canada has granted leave to appeal in Guindon v. The Queen (Docket # 35519). In this case, the Supreme Court of Canada will consider whether penalties imposed under section 163.2 of the Income Tax Act...more

Courts are Consistently Ruling that the Act of Production Privilege Will Not Defeat Grand Jury Subpoenas Calling for Foreign Bank...

On December 13, 2013, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit issued its decision in United States of America v. Under Seal. On December 19, 2013, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit issued its...more

The IRS and Gun Control

Earlier this month, the First Circuit Court of Appeals held in a case of first impression that evidence seized by IRS special agents from the taxpayer's home was admissible even though IRS Special Agents were armed when they...more

Offshore Accounts Holders Have No Fifth Amendment Protections

In what is becoming an increasingly used attack vehicle, the Department of Justice (DoJ) is using the “required records doctrine” to compel taxpayer’s to produce what may be incriminating evidence of ownership or control of...more

IRS Seeking 50% x 4 Penalties In FBAR Nonreporting Case

Taxpayers are required to disclose their ownership interests in foreign bank and financial accounts by filing a Form TD F 90-22.1, ...more

Top Reasons For Not Talking To An IRS Special Agent

The Fifth Amendment provides that “[n]o person…shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself….”...more

“Breaking Bad” And Tax Evasion

I love the TV Series “Breaking Bad” on AMC. In a nutshell, it is about a tough luck high school chemistry teacher named Walter White who turns into a major drug dealer and murderer. ...more

Religious Institutions Update: May 2013

Intellectual property is a legal construct referring to creations of the mind for which exclusive rights are recognized. Common types include copyrights, trademarks, patents, industrial design rights, trade dress and,...more

Supreme Court Settles Fifth Amendment Required Records Issue in Context of Offshore Bank Accounts

On May 13, 2013, the Supreme Court denied a taxpayer’s petition for certiorari regarding the Seventh Circuit’s August 27, 2012, decision applying the Required Records Exception to override the taxpayer’s Fifth Amendment...more

Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals Sustains Required Records Exception to the Fifth Amendment

On February 7, 2013, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit affirmed the decision of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia holding that the Required Records Exception overrides a...more

Required Records, The Act Of Production And Secret Offshore Accounts

The Fifth Amendment dictates that no person "shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself." While most non-lawyers (and many lawyers) might assume that this simple edict means the government cannot...more

Steven Getman: Legal links of interest for the week ending January 25, 2013

Attorney Steven Getman reports on some of the stories about courts, the law and lawyers in the news this past week: • Court strikes down Obama recess appointments: The DC Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that President...more

Ninth Circuit Holds that Fifth Amendment Does Not Shield Taxpayer's Attorney from Forced Production of Client-Taxpayer's Records

Applying the “foregone conclusion” exception to the Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination, the Ninth Circuit held on January 8, 2013, that the IRS could force a taxpayer’s criminal defense attorney to turn over...more

Ninth Circuit Interprets Fifth Amendment’s “Foregone Conclusion” Exception in IRS Summons Enforcement Case

On January 8, 2013, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit affirmed the decision of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in the case of United States v. Sideman & Bancroft LLP. ...more

District Court Decides FBAR Penalty Assessment Case - Both A Win For The Government & For OVDP Participants

Here at Moskowitz LLP, A Tax Law Firm based in San Francisco, CA, we have been following just how the Internal Revenue Service will collect FBAR penalties once imposed outside the scope of any Offshore Amnesty Program. ...more

Crown Appeals Tax Court Decision in Guindon – Are Advisor Penalties “Criminal”?

On October 31, 2012, the Crown filed a Notice of Appeal with the Federal Court of Appeal against the judgment of the Tax Court of Canada in Julie Guindon v. The Queen (2012 TCC 287). In that decision, the Tax Court held that...more

Tax Court holds that advisor penalties under section 163.2 of the ITA constitute criminal offences

In what is certain to be the first step in a very important precedent, the Tax Court of Canada held on October 2, 2012 that the advisor penalties created under section 163.2 of the Income Tax Act constitute criminal offences...more

Professional Ethics In A Tax World – Self-Assessment, Self-Incrimination, The Charter, Crown Fairness And Other Matters

TABLE OF CONTENTS 1.0 INTRODUCTION .... 1 2.0 KEY PRINCIPLES .... 3 2.1 “Voluntary” Self-Assessment .... 3 2.2 The Nature of Tax Penalties .... 4 2.3 Right Against Self-Incrimination .... 5 2.4...more

No Fifth Amendment Privilege For Offshore Banking Records

Under the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, a taxpayer may refuse to answer specific questions or produce specific records if it would violate his or her privilege against self-incrimination. In a recent appellate...more

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