Tax Roundup, 10/5/2012: $2 million to anonymous whistleblower. Plus more debate echoes!

October 5th, 2012 by Joe Kristan

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Cheating on business taxes just got a little scarier.  CNNMoney reports:

An anonymous Wall Streeter is getting rich exposing alleged tax fraud through the IRS’s whistleblower program.

Washington law firm Phillips & Cohen announced Thursday that its client, a “Wall Street insider,” has netted a $2 million reward from the Internal Revenue Service for exposing an alleged tax-avoidance scheme by manufacturer Illinois Tool Works

This is interesting for many reasons.  The report implies that the whistleblower is in the financial services business.  That could mean banking, investment banking, or even accounting.  That means somebody who knows how to work the whistle could be in your business.

If you can get a million dollars from the IRS and keep your identity secret, it becomes a lot easier to call the IRS.  It also becomes a lot more dangerous for the boss to take flaky tax positions, let alone commit tax crimes; every staff accountant becomes a potential IRS mole.  Because business taxes usually require some staff cooperation, this changes the odds in the tax game in favor of the IRS.

 

Richard Morrison,  Chart of the Day: The Growth of Refundable Tax Credits, 1990-2010. (Tax Policy Blog).

I bet the chart of tax refund fraud incidence would look about the same.

 

More debate fallout:

Christopher Bergin,  Shovel Ready (Tax.com):

And does the President really believe, as he said, that if we bring back the Clinton tax rates we will bring back the Clinton economy? Does he really think we are that naïve?

Clearly, Mitt Romney thinks we are that naïve. He came to the debate loaded with the latest iteration – it seems to change by the day – of his hocus pocus tax reform plan.

Going Concern,  Let’s Try to Make Some Sense of President Obama’s “Tax Breaks for Companies Shipping Jobs Overseas” Statement

Kay Bell,  Romney ‘makes up’ a new, higher tax deduction limit during the debate

Trish McIntire,  Location, Location, Location

Patrick Temple-West,  Essential reading: Fact or fiction in the U.S. presidential debate? and more

 

Anthony Nitti,  Tax Court Has Mercy on Taxpayer’s $16,000,000 Charitable Contribution Deduction

 Brian Strahle,  DC Employers Required to File Annual Use Tax Return by October 20, 2012!

Robert D. Flach,  TAX BLOGOSPHERE BUDDIES – JASON DINESEN

Peter Reilly,  Young Earth Creationists Whipsawed By IRS.  Tax Update coverage here.

 

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