Former Employee Alleges IRS Fraud By Church
Complaint Filed In 2019
How Whistleblower Cases Begin
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) rewards people who blow the whistle on corporations or other organizations who fail to pay the tax that they owe just as the False Claims Act rewards persons who submit fraudulent claims for payment to the government. 31 U.S.C. § 3729 et seq. (False Claims Act) .I.R.C. § 7623(b)(IRS Whistleblower Program). 2022 total reward figures have not been announced, but at least one large $8.8 million reward was granted to a whistleblower whose information enable the IRS to recover $35 million in taxes owed to the government for a single corporate taxpayer. Any type of tax fraud may be the basis of an IRS whistleblower application. In one case, discussed below and recently featured on CBS News 60 Minutes, a large American church allegedly shields billions of dollars of income unrelated to its religious/charitable work from the IRS. Evans Law Firm, Inc. represents individuals with credible information of offshore tax avoidance schemes or other tax fraud or money laundering schemes and can help you submit information of tax fraud and all related violations of the law to the government and present your evidence with a goal toward a reward if the IRS recovers. If you have credible information of tax fraud, call us today at (415)441-8669. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).
Allegations Against Church of Latter-Day Saints
60 Minutes recently interviewed an individual who is pursuing an IRS whistleblower case* against the Mormon Church. David Nielsen, a former portfolio manager for the church’s investment fund, alleges that the Church fails to pay taxes on the income and gains realized on its large investment fund. The income and gains, Nielsen alleges, are not spent on the church’s charitable and religious endeavors but rather retained in the fund which has a value of over $100 billion. Nielsen’s complaint describes the church collects roughly $7 billion in member contributions each year. Of that amount, the complaint alleges, $6 billion is spent on operating costs while the remaining $1 billion is transferred to Ensign Peak Advisors and added to the church’s investment portfolio. Nielsen alleges that Ensign has not used the money for charitable purposes in the past 22 years, but had twice used the money to prop up businesses, once for an insurance company and the second time for a shopping mall in Salt Lake City. Nielsen’s complaint also says the church may have additional holdings outside the management of Ensign Peak Advisors. The church denies the allegations and the complaint is still under review by the government. The Church recently settled charges by the U.S. Securities and Exchange for failing to file forms disclosing the Church’s investment.
How An IRS Whistleblower Case Works
The IRS program sets forth a detailed procedure for submitting whistleblower information. Individuals start a case by submitting a Form 211 “Application for Award for Original Information” under penalty of perjury. A whistleblower may not bring an independent action if the IRS decides not to pursue an action. However, the whistleblower may be eligible for an award if the IRS does successfully pursue a judicial or administrative action based upon the information submitted. Where the collected proceeds exceed $2 million or, if the taxpayer is an individual and their gross income exceeds $200,000, the IRS is required to pay an award to the whistleblower, provided other statutory qualifications are met. The range of such an award is typically between 15 percent and 30 percent of the amount collected.
Protection From Retaliation
Employees who discover their employer’s tax evasion maneuvers are protected from retaliation by their employers. See 26 U.S.C. § 7623. Despite this protection, employers may still retaliate. If they do, employees can fight back. Evans Law Firm, Inc. can represent you in any suit for employer retaliation in addition to representing them before the IRS with their whistleblower claim. Remedies for wrongful retaliation by an employer include reinstatement, double back pay, interest, and attorneys’ fees and costs for bringing your lawsuit. See 26 U.S.C. § 7623.
Ingrid M. Evans represents individuals with credible, original information of any kind of tax fraud, including offshore tax avoidance measures, and use of foreign corporations and accounts to avoid taxation or the like. Ingrid can be reached at (415) 441-8669, or by email at <a href=”mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org”>email@example.com</a>. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267). Ingrid also handles whistleblower actions under the Financial Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act (FIRREA/FIAFEA), the Commodities Futures Trading Commission Whistleblower Program, the Securities and Exchange Commission Whistleblower Program, False Claims Act cases, the FINRA Whistleblower Office and the California False Claims Act.
* Evans Law Firm, Inc. is not involved in the case in any way.