Occasionally clients will come into my office. They have tried by themselves or the help of someone else to set up payment arrangements. Sometimes they have their family attorney try and set up an installment agreement only to get denied. Other times they try to file their own OIC or Offer in Compromise. I cannot stress enough what a bad idea this is. Would you let your plumber fill a cavity? Would you perform open heart surgery on a friend? No, of course you wouldn’t. Read more
Maryland Get Ready for Tax Amnesty!
The amnesty application (AM-15) is scheduled to be available on August 28th. Applications will start being accepted on September 1st.
The Tax Amnesty Program applies to: Read more
Many clients come to our office who haven’t filed in many years. Sometimes it is only 2-3 years, other times they haven’t filed in 10 years or more. However many years it has been, filing past due returns can seem like a daunting task. All that paperwork and often times you are reliving a financially difficult situation. Things are not hopeless though, with an experienced tax team by your side you are in good hands.
It is a headache to try and look for all those documents. Read more
In the past two years I have noticed an increase in calls from taxpayers frightened by the IRS. They receive a threatening phone call where the “IRS” advises them they have missed previous notices and this is their last chance to pay before being hauled away to prison. Yelling, Screaming, and threatening is not how the Internal Revenue does business. Don’t be fooled by these scams, don’t give up your personal information, and do not send money to these thieves. The IRS estimates over $14 million has been paid to these con artists in the last two years alone.
We see this time and time again in our practice. Taxpayers come in with high or unrealistic expectations. Of course all taxpayers want their penalties and interest abated. Who wouldn’t love to settle for pennies on the dollar? Yes these programs do exist, but no not everyone qualifies for them. The hard truth that we have to break to our clients’ every day is that often times program they want and the program they qualify for may not be the same thing. Read more
Big stuff happening in Maryland! The Supreme Court has ruled Maryland’s income tax law unconstitutional. For years many Maryland residents and businesses were being double taxed on their out of state earnings. The State’s previous practice of withholding a credit on each county’s portion of state income tax harms some residents and businesses with out of state income. The Justices found that this law previously affirmed in 2013 would dissuade Maryland taxpayers from doing business across state lines.
In most states, income from outside that state is taxed in the state in which it was made. To protect against double dipping those states tend to give their residents and businesses a full credit for the income paid on out of state earnings.
Previously, Maryland residents and businesses were only permitted to deduct income taxes paid in other states from what they pay in Maryland, they were not afforded to the same deduction on piggyback tax collected for each of the 23 counties and Baltimore City.
Taxpayers who previously tried to claim the credit but were denied are now eligible for refunds. The years considered will be from 2006-2014. Early estimates say these refunds could cost the state $200 million plus interest. Going forward the loss of revenue for Maryland State is estimated around $42 million a year.
The Office of the Comptroller is set to review over 8,000 cases starting as far back as 2006. The money for the refunds will have to come from Maryland’s income tax reserve fund. The implications of these findings we are yet to find. If you were a small business in operation between 2006 and 2014, with out of state income, it may be in your best interest to contact a tax attorney regarding a possibly claim to refund. If you or someone you know would like us to review a possibly appeal or amendment, feel free to contact our firm at 410-727-6006.
Senate Bill 763 (SB763)
As we all have heard many times: History has a way of repeating itself. Too many times this has an ominous undertone. But today, I am rejoicing at the possibilities this cyclical occurrence may bring to my fellow Maryland Taxpayers.
Many of us can recall the most recent Tax Amnesty of 2009. Fortunately it’s back again. You may now be eligible to participate in Maryland’s 2015 Tax Amnesty. Bill 763 was signed in April 14, 2015. It is set to become law June 1, 2015. The State of Maryland will start accepting eligible Amnesty applicants as early as the fall. The new amnesty applies to individuals as well as corporate taxpayers. You may be eligible to take part in this fantastic opportunity and drastically reduce the penalties and interest you owe, as well as avoid criminal prosecution. Read more
In today’s world most of us have run into the need for an attorney at one time or another, or at least know someone who has. Maybe you received a speeding ticket you need to fight, or help with preparing your will, perhaps you were starting a new company and needed the paperwork prepared. These days there are attorneys who offer a multitude of services. What people have come to know is, when you want something handled the right way you need a professional. Not just a professional but someone who is skilled in the area you are seeking assistance. An attorney that specializes in one particular type of law and practices in it day in and day out. Would you hire a dentist to represent you in court, or a plumber to fix your roof? Well Taxes, Tax Problems, and Tax Controversies are no different. You want an experienced attorney that knows all the ins and outs, all the rules, and regulations. Read more
With an Internal Revenue Service now more aggressive than ever, it’s not a good time to be cheating Uncle Sam or living with tax problems. Fortunately, you don’t have to have IRS problems.
Are you scared of the Tax Man?
Well, if you have any tax problems or are cheating Uncle Sam in any way, you should be.
The Internal Revenue Service, once the butt of late-night television jokes, has changed. It’s now an aggressive agency with the tenacity and bite of a pit bull.
The IRS’s enforcement numbers in 2005 were up substantially compared to the year before — 20 percent more people were audited, including 221,000 taxpayers who earned more than $100,000 per year. All across the board, audits were up and enforcement was iron-fisted.
It’s not a good time to be cheating on your taxes. Just ask a few of these folks:
Singer-songwriter Ronald Isley, of the Isley Brothers, was convicted on five counts of tax evasion and one count of willful failure to file a tax return. He faces up to 26 years in the Big House.
Richard Hatch, the first winner of the reality television show Survivor, was charged with a 10-count indictment that alleges fraud and tax evasion. Prosecutors claim Hatch tried to avoid paying taxes on the $1,010,000 he won on the 2000 TV show. If convicted, he faces up to five years in the hoosegow.
Adrian K. Karsten, a former ESPN sportscaster and winner of a 1991 Emmy Award, received 11 months of home confinement after pleading guilty to two counts of failing to file income tax returns.
Lee Mroszak, a Gulf War veteran who is best known as “Crazy Cabbie” on the Howard Stern Show, received one year behind bars after pleading guilty to tax evasion.
And the list goes on and on and on.
Get the picture?
Uncle Sam means business, and for the past three years, the IRS has been getting more and more aggressive. There’s no tolerance for tax cheats and tax-avoidance schemes.
What’s more, 2006 will likely bring even more activity. Congress has already approved funding to allow the IRS to be as aggressive as it was in 2005, if not more.
If you’re one of the thousands of Americans with tax problems, you now have an ultimatum: consult with a qualified tax professional and resolve your problems once and for all or the roll the dice and take your chance.
You might not get caught this year. You might not get caught next.
But you will get caught. This year, make a wise New Year’s Resolution.
S.H. Block Tax Services
SH Block Tax Services Inc
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Baltimore, MD 21202
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