IRS Offshore Voluntary Disclosures: What’s Next In Disclosing Offshore Accounts
The IRS has made cracking down on offshore tax evasion a top enforcement priority and compliance pressure for U.S. taxpayers with offshore accounts is only going to increase. Under the IRS’ Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts Program (FBAR), “each United States person who has a financial interest in or signature or other authority over any foreign financial accounts, including bank, securities, or other type of financial accounts, in a foreign country, if the aggregate value of these financial accounts exceeds $10,000 at any time during the calendar year” must disclose the existence of such accounts, and report any income derived from them to the Internal Revenue Service. Taxpayers who fail to file the FBAR (Form 90-22.1) and report their offshore accounts can face serious civil and criminal penalties, including fines, probation and prison sentences.
This Program will outline and cover:
- The IRS Voluntary Disclosure Programs of the past
- The current IRS Voluntary Disclosure Programs
- The changes that have recently taken place in the current IRS Voluntary Disclosure Programs
- How to deal with IRS Appeals, the US Tax Court and the Department of Justice
- What is next for IRS Voluntary Disclosures?
Kevin E. Thorn, Managing Partner
Thorn Law Group
- Voluntary Disclosure
Kathleen A. Agbayani, Of Counsel
Baker & McKenzie LLP
- FATCA, CRS, Panama Papers
- How to deal with IRS Appeals, the US Tax Court and the Department of Justice
Matthew D. Lee, Partner
Blank Rome LLP
- History of U.S. efforts to regulate offshore activities of U.S. taxpayers
- IRS/DOJ efforts to enforce international tax compliance
- UBS and subsequent enforcement actions against financial institutions
- Criminal prosecutions of account holders
- Swiss Bank Program
- Civil enforcement efforts
- Sources of information for U.S. government about offshore activities of U.S. taxpayers
- Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA)
- John Doe summonses
- Whistleblowers (including Panama Papers)
- OVDP data mining
- Treaty requests
- What’s next for DOJ and IRS?
Giovanni V. Alberotanza, Attorney
Rosenberg Martin Greenberg, LLP
- Current options for taxpayers include staying silent, compliance going forward, so-called “quiet disclosures” or qualified amended returns, Delinquent FBAR or Delinquent International Information Return Submission Procedures, Streamlined Filing Compliance Procedures, or the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (“OVDP”).
- For those taxpayers that did not disclose their foreign assets, recent prosecutions include the February 3, 2016 guilty plea of Albert Cambata, 61 years old, who plead guilty to one count of filing a false income tax return and the March 9, 2016 guilty plea of two Cayman Island Financial Institutions that plead guilty to conspiring to hide more than $130 million in Cayman bank accounts.
- Streamlined Filing Compliance Procedures are for non-willful taxpayers and were modified on June 18, 2014 to include specific requirements for foreign and domestic taxpayers.
- The current Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program is a continuation of the 2012 program announced on January 9, 2012 and provides the best option for willful taxpayers.
- The number of financial institutions and facilitators that trigger a 50% penalty under the OVDP has increased from 13 in March 2015 to 97 in April 2016.
Who Should Attend:
- Foreign Investors
- Tax Preparers
- Tax Practitioners
- Tax Professionals
- In-house Counsel
- Private and Public Companies
- Other related/interested Professionals and Organizations
Kathleen Agbayani is of counsel in the North American Tax Practice Group. She joined Baker & McKenzie’s Washington, DC office after serving as an attorney-advisor for the Honorable Robert N. Armen, Jr., at the United States Tax Court. She is a committee member of the North American Tax Practice Group Tax Controversy Steering Committee and the Global Tax Practice Group Voluntary Disclosure Steering Committee. She has spoken at the American Bar Association Section of Taxation and The Tax Executives Institute.
Ms. Agbayani focuses her practice on tax controversy, voluntary disclosures, global wealth management, and transfer pricing. She advises individual and corporate clients on a variety of substantive and procedural matters during examination and administrative audits before the Internal Revenue Service and assists in contesting disputes in court. Ms. Agbayani also provides pro bono advice to many pro bono clients including the American University Washington College of Law Janet R. Spragens Federal Tax Clinic and D.C. Tax Legal Assistance, American Bar Association Military Pro Bono Project.
Kathleen Agbayani is of counsel in the North American Tax Practice Group. She joined Baker & McKenzie’s Washington, DC office …
Matthew D. Lee is a partner at Blank Rome LLLP in Philadelphia. He is a former U.S. Department of Justice trial attorney who concentrates his practice on all aspects of white collar criminal defense, government investigations, and federal tax controversies. He has extensive experience in advising clients on issues regarding foreign bank account reporting (FBAR) obligations, the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), and the Internal Revenue Service’s Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program. Mr. Lee has published numerous articles regarding the IRS voluntary disclosure programs and FBAR and FATCA reporting obligations and speaks frequently on these topics.
Mr. Lee regularly represents companies and individuals in federal criminal investigations involving tax, money laundering, health care, securities, public corruption, and fraud offenses, and has significant experience in handling all stages of federal litigation including trials and appeals.
Mr. Lee has also represented clients in all stages of proceedings before the Internal Revenue Service, including audits, appeals, and collections, and Tax Court and district court litigation. Mr. Lee also has experience in conducting corporate internal investigations and advising clients as to corporate compliance issues involving the Bank Secrecy Act, the USA Patriot Act, FATCA, and anti-money laundering laws and regulations.
Mr. Lee is the author of Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act Answer Book 2015 (Practising Law Institute) and publishes a blog devoted to addressing the latest developments in the tax controversy field at www.taxcontroversywatch.com.
Matthew D. Lee is a partner at Blank Rome LLLP in Philadelphia. He is a former U.S. Department of Justice …
Kevin E. Thorn is the Managing Member of the Thorn Law Group. Mr. Thorn’s expertise is highly sought after across the country and around the globe in all stages of civil and criminal tax controversies including, international tax law, IRS voluntary disclosures, offshore bank accounts and foreign asset disclosures, civil examinations, criminal investigations, IRS administrative appeals, collection alternatives, ethics investigations, and other types of complex civil litigation.
His broad range of clients includes high net individuals, individuals, tax professionals, partnerships, trusts, banks, closely-held businesses, accounting firms, law firms, and corporations. He is highly skilled, intellectually bright, and respected by professionals across the Nation. Mr. Thorn is one of the “Go To” tax attorneys in Washington, DC for complicated tax issues when high profile individuals or big name companies need important legal issues resolved.
Mr. Thorn represents taxpayers in all types of federal and state civil and criminal tax controversy and litigation matters. He has advocated on behalf of his clients before the Internal Revenue Service, the Department of Justice, the United States Tax Court, the Internal Revenue Service’s Office of Professional Responsibility, the Internal Revenue Service’s Whistleblower Office, and DC, Virginia, Maryland and other state taxing authorities.
Mr. Thorn is a regular speaker and instructor at many professional organizations. He has spoken with and advised banks in Europe, as well as, financial service providers in the Caribbean and other parts of the world regarding FATCA and U.S. information reporting requirements. Mr. Thorn has also spoken on several tax law and government procedure matters to such professional organizations as the American Bar Association’s Section of Taxation, the Federal Bar Association, state bar associations, and several academic and regional conferences.
Kevin E. Thorn is the Managing Member of the Thorn Law Group. Mr. Thorn’s expertise is highly sought after across …
Giovanni Alberotanza is an attorney in Rosenberg Martin Greenberg’s nationally-recognized tax controversy department. His practice focuses on the representation of individuals and businesses throughout all stages of civil and criminal federal and state tax controversies, including litigation in federal and state courts.
Giovanni earned his Juris Doctor from the University of Baltimore School of Law where he served on the editorial board of the University of Baltimore Law Review and as a Litigation Fellow with the Snyder Center for Litigation Skills. He joined the firm in January 2010, practicing law while pursuing his LL.M. in Taxation at the Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, DC.
After practicing law in Baltimore for over a year and a half, he accepted a two-year position in Washington, DC as an attorney-adviser with the US Tax Court. He returned to private practice in 2013 and continues to apply his broad experiences to guide individuals and businesses through a wide-range of complex tax issues.
Giovanni Alberotanza is an attorney in Rosenberg Martin Greenberg’s nationally-recognized tax controversy department. His practice focuses on the representation of …
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About Baker & McKenzie LLP
Baker & McKenzie has provided sophisticated legal advice and services to many of the world's most dynamic and global organizations since our founding in 1949. With a network of more than 4,200+ locally qualified, internationally experienced lawyers in 77 offices worldwide and 47 countries, Baker & McKenzie has the knowledge and resources to deliver the broad scope of quality legal services required to respond effectively to international and local needs -- consistently, confidently, and with sensitivity for cultural, social, and legal practice differences.
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About Blank Rome LLP
With nearly 550 attorneys serving clients around the globe, Blank Rome is an international law firm representing businesses and organizations ranging from Fortune 500 companies to start-up entities. Founded in 1946, Blank Rome advises clients on all aspects of their businesses, including commercial and corporate litigation; consumer finance; corporate, M&A, and securities; environmental, energy, and natural resources; finance, restructuring, and bankruptcy; intellectual property and technology; labor and employment; maritime, international trade and government contracts; matrimonial; products liability, mass torts, and insurance; real estate; tax, benefits, and private client; and white collar defense and investigations. Blank Rome also represents pro bono clients in a wide variety of cases and matters. For additional information, visit www.blankrome.com.
About Thorn Law Group
The DC tax attorneys at Thorn Law Group have developed a nationwide practice guiding individuals, banks, trusts, foundations and other organizations through the processes involved in managing and disclosing offshore bank accounts. Each Washington, DC tax lawyer at our firm has a thorough understanding of the rapidly developing laws and regulations governing overseas bank accounts. We also have extensive knowledge of the procedures and methods used by the U.S government to monitor and investigate offshore accounts. Our attorneys work closely with clients to identify and resolve potential legal issues in advance in order to bring their offshore bank accounts into compliance with government regulations.
About Rosenberg Martin Greenberg, LLP
Rosenberg Martin Greenberg is a full-service business law firm headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland with offices in Annapolis, Maryland and Wilmington, Delaware. We advise entrepreneurs and organizations on an extensive range of issues that drive their success. Our core practice areas are business litigation, real estate, business planning & transactions, commercial lending, tax & wealth planning, creditors' rights and tax controversy. Our attorneys are committed to providing our clients exceptional, efficient service that makes a difference.