Understanding the Ruckus Behind Racketeering

If you’ve ever found yourself grousing that a fee or a cost is a racket, then congratulations—you have just accused the seller of racketeering. Racketeering is the process of conducting a racket. A racket is a criminal enterprise whereby victims are made to pay for solutions to problems that do not exist or that will not be put into effect. The diversity of rackets is truly a wonder of criminal enterprise. Read More

How to Reduce IRS Penalties

Paying taxes can be hard enough, but what if you’re hit with penalties on top of them? The IRS has over 100 different possible penalties that they can assess. Most of these penalties fit into one of two categories: collections and accuracy. Collections refers to late filing while accuracy refers to people providing incorrect information. While the best course is to avoid paying penalties at all by filing on time Read More

What Exactly Does It Mean to be Charged with Mortgage Fraud?

Mortgage fraud is, according to the definition from the FBI, “any material misstatement, misrepresentation or omission relied upon by an underwriter or lender to fund, purchase or insure a loan.” This type of fraud can be committed either by a borrower, by lending institutions, or even by other parties involved in the mortgage process like title agencies and mortgage brokers. Mortgage fraud can occur at any time, Read More

Understanding Currency Transaction Violations

There are many laws governing how currency can be deposited, withdrawn, and moved around. Most of these laws are put in place to attempt to stop money laundering, drug dealing, organized crime, and terrorism. For example, you are only allowed to make withdrawals or transfers from saving accounts a certain number of times per month. Violations of this regulation typically just require that the savings account be Read More

6 Types of Healthcare Fraud

Healthcare fraud is not new, nor is it going away anytime soon. At the very least, however, it is possible to become educated on what constitutes healthcare fraud so to avoid committing it. Here are six common types of healthcare fraud. 1) Billing for services that were never given. The services that are billed to an insurance company or the government should be reflected in the medical records of the patient. Read More

The IRS Summons: What to Know and How to Respond

An IRS summons can strike fear in the heart of even the most stalwart taxpayer. Being called up to the principal’s office can be daunting and overwhelming. As much as you would like to throw away the offending piece of paper and stick your head in the sand, the best responses to an IRS summons involves the following steps. 1) Open the summons and read it. This may seem obvious, but so often, we assume that we Read More

What You Need to Know About Federal Criminal Forfeiture

Criminal forfeiture is one of the federal government’s more far-reaching punishments for certain crimes because it means that the property that was used in the commission of the crime must be forfeited by the owner to the government. For as devastating as its effects can be, it may be surprising to know that criminal forfeiture is a fairly recent development. This is in part because, until the 1970s, asset forfeiture Read More

Potential Alternatives to the IRS Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program

If you are a U.S. taxpayer and have assets in another country (or countries), are you required to disclose this to the IRS? The answer is a resounding YES. Not only are you required to let the IRS know about it, but with 2010’s and the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), foreign banks and financial institutions are now required to report accounts of U.S. taxpayers at their institutions to the IRS. Financial Read More

Tax Law 101: The Notice of Deficiency

A letter by many names - 90-day letter, CP3219B Notice, Statutory Notice of Deficiency - still has one purpose (other than to strike fear in the heart of the recipient). Officially, that purpose is to advise you that the IRS has proposed a tax deficiency. This isn’t the entire story, however, because before the Notice of Deficiency is sent, the IRS would have probably sent prior correspondence advising you of Read More

On the Mend: Repairing Your Criminal Record Through Expungement and Sealing of Records

We’ve all made mistakes over the years that we’ve paid for. Some mistakes we pay for more than others, such as arrests and being convicted of a crime. These remain on a person’s record for life and can hinder the person’s ability to find a job and get housing, among other things. What if it was possible to have that arrest or guilty plea removed from the person’s record? In Florida, it is possible, although there are Read More