Internal Revenue Service Whistleblower Awards
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced recently that it paid out over $33.9 million in whistleblower awards in 2017 and made over 242 award determinations. The IRS award program encourages whistleblowers to assist in prosecuting tax fraud. As one advocate put it, “Whistleblowers are the backbone of tax law enforcement. They allow the American people to recover billions of dollars from tax fraudsters.” The California and San Francisco whistleblower/qui tam attorneys at Evans Law Firm represent whistleblowers in IRS whistleblower cases and know what the IRS looks for in terms of credible hard evidence of fraud. If you or a loved one has credible information regarding tax avoidance schemes or false claims in California, please call the whistleblower/qui tam attorneys at Evans Law Firm, Inc. (415)441-8669, and we can help.
Since the inception of the IRS Whistleblower program in 2007, whistleblower disclosures have resulted in recoveries of more than $3.6 billion, and the total amount of awards paid out is now over $490 million. The IRS provides for two types of awards for whistleblowers. If the taxes, penalties, interest and other amounts in dispute exceed $2 million, and a few other qualifications are met, the IRS will pay the whistleblower an award of 15 percent to 30 percent of the amount collected. If the case deals with an individual, his or her annual gross income must be more than $200,000. The IRS also has an award program for other whistleblowers – generally those who do not meet the dollar thresholds of $2 million in dispute or cases involving individual taxpayers with gross income of less than $200,000. The awards through this program are less, with a maximum award of 15 percent up to $10 million.
What An IRS Whistleblower Case Looks Like
IRS whistleblower cases are extremely complex and take a long time from initial application through investigation and discovery to resolution. Recent cutbacks in staffing have resulted in a slow down in review of applications so whistleblowers need to patient with their case. Any whistleblower with credible information of a large tax avoidance scheme should seek counsel to pursue his or her case. While the potential awards are very significant, the IRS demands hard evidence of the fraud and will closely examine whether the whistleblower truly has original, solid documentation of the alleged fraud. A hunch or suspicion of fraud is not enough. If the IRS is persuaded a whistleblower has hard evidence of a tax fraud, the Service may assist by sharing confidential tax information. We at Evans Law Firm know what the government looks for in investigating and prosecuting large tax avoidance schemes and can sift through the evidence you have to determine the best way to proceed with an application.
If you have information regarding tax fraud or abusive tax avoidance or false claims and are looking to be a whistleblower in California, contact Ingrid Evans and the other IRS whistleblower and tax fraud attorneys at the Evans Law Firm at (415) 441-8669, or by email at <a href=”mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org”>email@example.com</a>. Our attorneys have experience with complex qui tam or whistleblower cases, including IRS tax avoidance whistleblower cases and tax and securities fraud whistlwblowers, and cases against large insurance companies. We can help guide your case through a jury trial or toward an equitable settlement. We handle cases involving physical and financial elder abuse, nursing home abuse, whole life insurance and universal life insurance, and indexed, variable, and fixed annuities.