Bakersfield, CA Tax Attorney
The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017 sought to bring clarity and simplicity to a notoriously elaborate Tax Code. However, even after extensive reforms, federal tax laws continue to cause confusion for millions of taxpayers – confusion which is only compounded by additional layers of local, state, and international tax regulations. Unfortunately, misunderstanding U.S. or California tax regulations can place a Bakersfield taxpayer, the taxpayer’s family, or the taxpayer’s business into financial or legal jeopardy. Agencies like the Franchise Tax Board (FTB) or Internal Revenue Service (IRS) may audit the taxpayer, assess penalties and interest, or even refer the taxpayer to other government agencies, such as the Department of Justice (DOJ), for criminal prosecution for willful tax evasion or other offenses.
If you are need help with a state, federal, or international tax issue, the wisest course of action is to contact a Bakersfield tax lawyer or attorney-CPA for immediate assistance. For a reduced-rate consultation about professional tax services in Bakersfield, California, contact the Tax Law Office of David W. Klasing online, or call our tax firm at (800) 681-1295 today.
International Tax Help in Bakersfield, CA
Over the past decade, the IRS has set an agency-wide priority to crack down on offshore tax evasion, which is the practice of intentionally concealing global income, foreign bank accounts, or other foreign assets in other nations or territories. These nations and territories are often, though not always, well-known tax havens such as Luxembourg, Switzerland, Bermuda, the Cayman Islands, or Singapore.
Regardless of whether the offshore location is considered to be a tax haven, the account holder generally has a requirement to disclose the foreign account(s) and foreign taxable income contained therein. With extensive experience working with California residents who have foreign accounts, citizens who are working or living abroad, and U.S. expats, our offshore lawyers in Bakersfield can help to ensure that you have met, in the safest possible manner, your obligations to report global income to the IRS. These obligations, which may be triggered if the foreign income exceeded $10,000 or $50,000 at any time during the tax year, may include the following:
- Filing a Foreign Bank Account Report, commonly known as the “FBAR” (FinCEN Form 114)
- Filing Form 8938 (Statement of Specified Foreign Financial Assets)
- Filing Form 5471 (Information Return of U.S. Persons with Respect to Certain Foreign Corporations)
Because the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (OVDP) is coming to an end in 2018, it is urgent for noncompliant taxpayers to explore their disclosure options as soon as possible. Contact our international tax attorneys for prompt assistance.
Bakersfield Business Tax Attorneys for Employment and Payroll Taxes
As a business owner, you have responsibilities that do not concern most other taxpayers. First, you must ensure that your business is using the Tax Code in a way that supports the long-term financial growth of the company. Second, you must ensure that you are properly withholding, matching, and depositing payroll taxes, which are also referred to as “FICA taxes” or “trust fund taxes.” You must also take care to properly classify your workers as employees or independent contractors, ensure that any retirement plans or pensions you offer comply with ERISA (the Employee Retirement Income Security Act), determine how the company will change ownership when you are no longer at its helm, ensure compliance with California sales tax laws, and make other business and estate planning decisions that are impacted by state and/or federal tax regulations.
Our Bakersfield business tax lawyers have assisted numerous employers, investors, entrepreneurs, and shareholders with the tax planning aspects of business entity selection, business succession planning, lawfully utilizing tax havens for companies, and related matters. We provide payroll and employment tax representation in California for corporations, limited liability companies (LLCs), partnerships, sole proprietorships, non-profit organizations, clerical or religious organizations, and more.
IRS, FTB, CDTFA (BOE) and EDD Audit Defense in Bakersfield, CA
A tax audit, also known as an “examination,” can be initiated by the IRS, FTB CDTFA (BOE) or EDD depending on whether the issue in question pertains to federal taxes, such as an IRS audit for federal income tax evasion, or state taxes, such as a California sales tax audit for evasion of sales tax. Tax audit procedures vary depending on factors like why the audit is being conducted, what type of audit is being conducted (e.g. field audits versus desk audits), and the nature and severity of the issue or error underlying the audit (e.g. a negligent or purposeful and substantial understatement of income).
While these factors vary, one variable never changes: that the auditor’s goal is to uncover any crime or error, however minor, that may have occurred in your past. Depending on the issue, the statute of limitations may give the auditor three years, six years, or unlimited time to examine your records.
An audit may result in assessment of additional penalties, or even a criminal tax investigation. It is therefore crucial to be represented by an FTB tax audit lawyer or IRS tax audit lawyer from the very beginning of the audit process, starting with the first notification you receive from the state or federal government. Other than general FTB and IRS tax audits, additional types of audits we handle include:
Bakersfield IRS, FTB, CDTFA (BOE) and EDD Audit Appeals Representation
It rarely is the case that a taxpayer both agrees with a Federal or California auditor’s conclusions and voluntarily consents to paying the resulting additional tax, penalties and interest. Taxpayers often disagree with an auditor’s findings, and can often find themselves financially unable to pay the additional tax, penalties and interest or other fines that have been assessed or proposed. Taxpayers that outright disagree with an auditor’s findings and wish to challenge or protest the outcome of the audit need experienced and practical representation to obtain optimal results.
The Federal and California audit appeals process is complicated, and rarely successful for the unrepresented taxpayer. It is also governed by unforgiving deadlines and procedural requirements. A tax audit attorney can help you avoid these pitfalls while giving you a better chance of successfully protesting the audit’s outcome, especially where the law and fact are squarely on your side. A Bakersfield tax lawyer can provide FTB, CDTFA (BOE), EDD or IRS appeals representation to dispute the auditor’s findings – potentially resulting in a significantly lower tax bill. An appeals attorney may be able to help the taxpayer avoid the early impositions of a State or Federal levy, tax lien, or tax garnishment where an audit goes uncontested until the end of the appeals or litigation process or by negotiating an installment agreement or offer in compromise (OIC) at the conclusion of the appeals / litigation process.
Bakersfield Criminal Tax Defense Lawyers
A high-risk tax audit, known as an “egg shell audit” – has the potential to result in Federal and or California criminal tax charges. Formal charges may be filed by state or federal prosecutors using either an indictment or an information, depending on the circumstances. The taxpayer may be under IRS criminal investigation for weeks, months, or even longer before any charges are filed. The moment you become aware, or merely suspect, a criminal tax audit or investigation into yourself or your business is the moment you should contact a Bakersfield tax defense lawyer for guidance on which steps to take – and avoid taking – as the government develops its civil or criminal tax case against you.
Keep in mind that most tax crimes are federal felonies, which tend to carry some of the harshest possible penalties in the U.S. judicial system. Tax fraud punishments can include criminal tax fines, IRS restitution, imprisonment, supervised release after the offender leaves prison, and, in cases involving CPAs, other taxpayer advocates, or anyone under California’s Business and Professions code, (Doctor’s Lawyers, Dentists, Architects, Actuaries, Engineers ect.) potential career-ending professional disciplinary actions. To provide an example, the tax evasion penalty can include a fine of up to $100,000 (or up to $500,000 for corporations), up to five years in prison, and payment for the cost of prosecution.
A tax evasion attorney in Bakersfield may be able to, at worst, mitigate or, at best, outright avoid the civil and or criminal tax penalties you are facing. However, each moment you delay makes it harder to fight the charges successfully. Contact an IRS tax attorney right away if you suspect you are being audited or investigated in a scenario where you could potentially be charged with tax evasion (attempt to evade or defeat tax), payroll tax fraud (willful failure to collect or pay over tax), willful failure to file a return (owing “back taxes”), making false statements, interfering with the administration of Internal Revenue laws, or other tax crimes in California.
Bakersfield Tax Attorneys for Businesses and Individuals
Armed with more than 20 years of experience providing thousands of taxpayers with sophisticated tax services ranging from bookkeeping and accounting to tax planning for foreign companies to Bitcoin tax issues to divorce tax issues, the award-winning team of Tax Attorneys and CPAs at the Tax Law Office of David W. Klasing is committed to delivering unparalleled client service with an emphasis on upholding your rights, protecting your wealth, and minimizing your losses. For a confidential, reduced-rate initial consultation with our knowledgeable team of tax professionals, call us at (661) 432-1480 or (800) 681-1295 or make an appointment online to visit our Bakersfield office at the address below:
4900 California Avenue
Tower B, 2nd Floor
Bakersfield, CA 93309l
Helpful Tax Law Q and A Library: https://klasing-associates.com/law-library/
Bakersfield Tax Law Offices
For any of your tax planning compliance and controversy needs in Bakersfield, contact the Lawyers at The Tax Law Offices of David W. Klasing today. Our experienced Tax Lawyers offer a reduced-rate consultation on new cases or engagements. Call (661) 432-1480 or 800-681-1295 or contact us online today to schedule a reduce rate initial consultation at our Bakersfield tax law offices, or at one of our other convenient locations across Southern California.