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St. Louis Tax Law Blog

Man accused of tax evasion, other tax-related crimes

Most people and businesses in the United States are required to pay taxes. Though there are relatively few people who fully understand federal laws regarding taxes, most in Missouri and across the country are able to successfully file their taxes each year as required. However, when a tax situation becomes complicated -- such as when a person is accused of tax evasion -- it may become necessary to seek guidance from an experienced professional.  

In fact, an out-of-state man is now facing criminal charges after federal law enforcement officials claimed that he did not pay his taxes as required by law. The man is said to have owned four different business in addition to operating a trailer park. Reports claim that the man controlled over 160 business entities that he used to hide his income and assets.

Terrence Howard under investigation for tax evasion

Often those in Missouri and across the country who make a great deal of money have people who help them manage it, including preparing and filing their tax returns for them. Unfortunately, even with oversight, mistakes can be made. In fact, actor Terrence Howard and his ex-wife are now reportedly under investigation for tax evasion, though the details of the suspicions about them are unclear.

Though Howard and Mira Pak divorced in 2015, reports indicate that they have since rekindled their romance and became engaged in Dec. 2018. They reportedly became aware of the investigation against them in May. The suspicions are said to surround Universal Bridges Inc., a company that Pak is believed to own.

What can I expect if I am heading to tax court?

When a letter from the IRS comes in the mail, you may be like many in Missouri and across the country who assume it can't be good news. In fact, you may delay finding out by leaving the mail untouched for days or even weeks. As understandable as it may be to hide from the IRS, in some cases, the letters in those unopened envelopes may contain critical and time-sensitive information.

For example, as terrifying as it may seem to receive a letter from the IRS about the results of your recent audit, such a warning is also an opportunity to explore your options. If you fail to reply, the IRS assumes you accept the results of the audit, and that may result in penalties. However, you have the right to dispute the outcome of the audit, and that means heading to tax court.

Guilty plea in business owner's tax evasion case

People who own their own companies in Missouri and across the country often work hard to ensure their success. However, some people may accidentally make mistakes with the money that their business brings in -- innocuous decisions that may not fully take into consideration the tax implications. Unfortunately, a business owner in another state has recently pleaded guilty to a charge of tax evasion.

The defendant in the case is the owner of a deli. Reports indicate that the criminal charges filed against the man are related to claims stemming from his 2012 and 2013 taxes related to his business. Federal law enforcement officials believe that he used several strategies to avoid paying federal taxes.

Is the IRS going to garnish your wages?

Despite your best efforts, you have been unable to keep up with your debt. Perhaps the breaking point was when you completed your tax returns and discovered you owed the federal government a significant amount of money. You may be doing your best, working extra shifts or taking a second job, but you feel as if you are sinking deeper into your debt.

You probably know some of the consequences for falling behind on your debts. That's what makes people anxious when they are delinquent. A debt collector can take many steps in an attempt to claim what you may owe, including filing a lawsuit, repossessing property you used as collateral or garnishing your wages. When it comes to delinquent taxes, the federal government has a little more leeway than most creditors.

What can trigger an IRS audit?

Though the tax filing deadline has passed, there are many people in Missouri who may be concerned about the potential for additional questions from the IRS. Despite the stress that the audit process can create, the chances of being the subject of one is actually pretty slim, with an individual audit rate of less than 1% in 2017. However, there are certain factors that could attract IRS attention.

For example, failing to report income, either from wages, pensions, dividends or other sources, could be a red flag. The IRS receives copies of a variety of different forms, such as W-2s and 1099s, and a computer cross-checks the forms. If a discrepancy occurs, additional scrutiny will likely result.

What are your options when you can't pay your taxes?

Tax time has come and gone, and many Missouri residents now wonder how they will pay the amounts they owe. No one wants to pay taxes, but ignoring this civic responsibility comes with dire consequences. If you are among the many who cannot afford to immediately pay the amount owed, you may be searching for a solution to this problem.

You don't want the IRS to start garnishing your wages, levying your bank accounts or putting liens on your property. Instead, you want to find a way to deal with your balance that satisfies the obligation without much, if any, impact to your credit or your life.

Tax preparer charged with tax evasion, fraud

Anyone in Missouri who has ever filed their taxes likely knows that it can be extremely complicated. Even those people who prepare taxes for a living may struggle sometimes with the process. Unfortunately, a man in another state now faces criminal charges, including tax evasion.

The man faces multiple counts as a result of a recent indictment. The 64-year-old reportedly was the sole operator of a business that prepared tax returns. However, federal authorities claim that from 2013 to 2017, he listed business expenses and losses that he knew his clients had not incurred in addition to charitable contributions that were fake in filings h prepared for his clients in an attempt to reduce their tax liability. Officers further claim that the man worked as a "ghost preparer," leaving no trace that he prepared the returns, including filing electronically to make it look like the taxpayer filed them.

Responding to IRS tax audits in Missouri

At this time of year, many people in Missouri and across the country are thinking of their taxes. While many people have already filed, they may still be waiting to receive their return. Others may be anxious about the possibility of further questions from the IRS in the form of audits.

In reality, audits happen relatively rarely. Approximately 1 out of 184 filers were audited in 2017. Of these, the majority of the audits were completed by mail with less than 25 percent happening in person, either at the person's home or at a field office. Though the ones occurring by mail may be relatively simple, a taxpayer facing an in-person audit or one that results in a dispute over the determination of the IRS may choose to seek advice from an experienced attorney.

Business owner pleads guilty to tax evasion charges

Running a business is often complicated. For a small family run business in Missouri and other areas of the country, a great deal of the responsibility can fall on a single person. As such, it may be understandable that a person may think nothing of depositing a check, even if the payment has not been properly documented. Unfortunately, federal law enforcement officials may interpret such an act as deliberate tax evasion rather than a time-saving measure.

Unfortunately, a man in another state recently pleaded guilty to a charge of tax evasion. Federal officials say that the 58-year-old man runs a snowplowing and landscaping business. Authorities believe that from 2013 to 2016, the man cashed business-related checks that were made out to him instead of the business and did not report them to the IRS. They also claim that the man paid undocumented workers with cash and did not pay employment taxes for them.

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