Willful Violations

News & Analysis as of

Is Mental Incapacity a Defense to Tax Penalties and FBAR Penalties?

The Tax Crimes Handbook of the Office of Chief Counsel, Criminal Tax Division of the Internal Revenue Service defines "Willfulness” as follows: "[a] Willfulness is defined as the "voluntary, intentional violation of a...more

Target's Successful Defense To A FCRA Class Action Is Good News For Employers

Target requires job applicants to sign a “Consent & Disclosure” form advising the applicant that Target will obtain an employment background report. The form discloses that a consumer report or investigative consumer report...more

Repeated Willful Violations During Trial of Court’s In Limine Rulings Results in Terminating Sanctions Including Dismissal of...

The Court of Appeal of the State of California - Second Appellate District in Osborne v. Todd Farm Service, et al. (5/2/16 – Case no. B260280) affirmed the trial court’s dismissal of plaintiff’s complaint for personal...more

Appellate Court Notes

Appellate Court Advance Release Opinions: AC36726 - Schull v. Schull - Trial court properly refused to hold ex-husband in contempt for not paying 50 percent of child’s surgery per the original decree. The Trial...more

The Importance of Understanding “Corrupt” Intent

All generalizations are false, including this one — Mark Twain Proving intent is a difficult task. White collar crimes turn on the issue of intent – what was in the offender’s mind. With most things in life, people have mixed...more

Bank Hit with Sanctions for Violation of the Automatic Stay

A recent case from the Western District of North Carolina, Statesville Division, reminds us all of the consequences for violating the automatic stay. Nationstar Mortgage, LLC apparently continued its efforts to collect a debt...more

Is Mental Impairment a Basis to Claim "Non-willful" Behavior?

The Tax Crimes Handbook of the Office of Chief Counsel, Criminal Tax Division of the Internal Revenue Service defines "Willfulness” as follows...more

SEC-JPMorgan Securities Settle False Advertising Action

The holiday season may be a time of good cheer. Wall Street banks may not agree, however, at least for this year. As the season began to unfold JPMorgan settled a Commission action centered on conflicts by admitting the facts...more

Can I Be Criminally Prosecuted for Violating Federal Safety and Health Regulations?

Earlier this month, a federal jury in West Virginia found Don Blankenship, former Chairman and CEO of the Massey Energy Company, guilty of a misdemeanor charge of conspiring to willfully violate safety and health standards...more

Telecommunications Giant Hit With TCPA Treble Damages Award For Calls to Reassigned Cell Number

The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) prohibits non-emergency calls to cell phone numbers using automatic telephone dialing systems (ATDS) or prerecorded voice messages absent the called party’s prior express consent....more

New Haven Firefighters Sue Over Overtime Miscalculation

On September 1, 2015, a total of 174 current and former firefighters filed a lawsuit against the City of New Haven (the “City”) seeking, among other things, back pay, liquidated damages, interest and attorney’s fees. The...more

SEC Charges Four Individuals and Nutrition Company for Failure To Disclose Executive Perks

On September 8, the SEC charged a sports supplements and nutrition company, its former audit committee chairman and three of its current and former executive officers with committing accounting, disclosure and other...more

Cecil the Lion and Due Diligence Failures

The “I didn’t know” defense is a tough one to sustain. Maybe you didn’t “know,” but should you have known? Were all the signs there but you looked the other way? Should you have asked more questions? Is it fair to infer by...more

CentsAbility: Creditors' Rights Law Update - If you Have an Objection, Speak Now or Forever Hold Your Peace

A creditor recently received a wake-up call from the Bankruptcy Court for the District of South Carolina in In re Crawford, an opinion issued by the Court on June 8, 2015. In Crawford, the Court granted the debtors’ motion to...more

IRS New Guidance Significantly Reduces Maximum FBAR Penalties

To moderate the draconian Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBAR) violation penalties under Title 31 of the U.S. Code, the IRS just published guidance that significantly reduces willful and non-willful FBAR violations....more

How Does the IRS Determine if Conduct is "Willful" or "Non-Willful"?

This Article is a guide for practitioners and taxpayers in deciding whether to apply for the streamline procedures of the IRS's Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program ("OVDP"). The streamline procedures require a certification...more

Plaintiff Must Show Defendant’s Knowledge of TCPA Violation To Get Treble Damages, 11th Circuit Rules

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit has ruled that a plaintiff must show that the defendant knew its conduct violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) to establish a willful or knowing TCPA violation....more

Considerations in Obtaining Advice of Counsel to Rebut a Claim of Willfulness

In 2007, the willfulness inquiry changed significantly with the Federal Circuit’s seminal decision, In re Seagate. In addition to establishing a new twoprong test for willful infringement, the Federal Circuit in Seagate...more

Part VI – Willful Or Non-Willful Offshore Omissions & Conclusion

Below is Part 6 and the conclusion of my partner, Rick Josepher’s, analysis of the new offshore enforcement environment in light of the new 2014 Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Procedures....more

Offshore Tax Enforcement Update: IRS Unveils Major Changes to Voluntary Disclosure Program

Since the 1970s, U.S. taxpayers with foreign banks accounts have been required to annually report their foreign bank account information to the Department of Treasury on a Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts...more

Criminal Conviction Upheld for Modifying Videogame Console

USA v. Reichert - The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit recently affirmed a defendant’s criminal conviction under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act for trafficking technology that modifies technological...more

Credit Suisse Admits Securities Law Violations

Another example of the Commission’s new and evolving ad hoc admissions policy emerged from the settlement of an administrative proceeding with Credit Suisse Group AG. In the Matter of Credit Suisse Group AG, File No. 3-15763...more

Willful Fair Credit Reporting Act Violation Confers Article III Standing

Whether they would admit it or not, most people have probably at some point searched for their own name in a search engine. Often the results illustrate how much personal information has been scraped and aggregated by...more

Ninth Circuit Rules Against Spokeo on FCRA Claim

On February 4, 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held that plaintiffs need not allege actual injury to demonstrate constitutional standing for a willful violation of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (the...more

Federal Circuit Has Appellate Jurisdiction Even Where Damages, Willfulness Have Not Been Determined

Although the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit did not take a position on the propriety of bifurcating damages and willfulness, to the extent those issues are separate from infringement, a party will now be able...more

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