IRS whistleblower primer: how illegal tax shelters work

Now that the new IRS whistleblower program has ramped up and is issuing rewards to whistleblowers who reveal major fraud, including one $104 million reward last year, people are coming forward to reveal efforts to evade taxes through tax shelters. Indeed, this may be the most fertile ground for whistleblowers. An illegal tax shelter reduces the amount of tax a taxpayer (including corporations) must pay but it makes it hard to get at the money. Offshore tax havens are generally used in this fashion: companies form corporations and park their moneys in banks and trust providers in foreign countries. These entities make it difficult to trace ownership. Some of the most popular tax havens include Panama, Belize, the Cayman Islands, St. Kitts, Nevis, the British Virgin Islands and the Isle of Man. While not all offshore accounts are illegal, if they do not meet with the IRS regulations and they are evading taxes, the owner may be liable to the government. Whistleblowers may recover up to 30% of what the government recovers including penalties. If you are aware of tax evasion and wish to become a whistleblower, contact Jeffrey Newman. He represents whistleblowers.