Tax Litigation in the Courts

The taxing entities, like the Internal Revenue Service and the Arizona Department of Revenue, have two avenues to enforce the tax laws: (1) civil remedies; and (2) criminal remedies.  The civil remedies may include garnishing wages, placing liens on property, and fines.  The criminal remedies may include fines and even jail time.

Civil Tax Litigation

Many times, taking a civil tax matter to court is unnecessary and avoidable.  A tax attorney may be able to negotiate a payment plan, a settlement, a deferral, or an abatement prior to going to court.  Avoiding court is ideal and can save you a lot of time and money.  If this is not feasible, a tax payer may be forced to take any tax issues to court.  The four courts where federal tax litigation generally occurs are the U.S. Tax Court, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, the U.S. District Court, and the Federal Claims Court.  If a tax matter makes it to court, it will require a level of skill and knowledge that a tax attorney can provide.

Any civil tax audit or investigation can turn into a criminal investigation.  Therefore, it is important for the taxpayer to employ the help of a tax attorney as early in the process as possible.  A tax attorney will be able to help you possibly avoid a civil tax matter turning into a criminal tax matter.

Criminal Tax Litigation

Criminal investigations may include criminal tax evasion/fraud, corporate fraud, public corruption, organized crime, or drug trafficking.  Regardless of where the criminal complaint against a tax payer originates, it must go through the IRS’s Criminal Investigation Division before being sent to the Department of Justice for prosecution.  The IRS Criminal Investigation Division reports that, since 1919, its conviction rates have remained at 90% and above.

It is clear that both civil and criminal tax can prove to be time-consuming and confusing.  With the various entities involved and the applicable laws, finding a knowledgeable tax attorney is essential to the success of your case.  Tax attorney Otto Shill has more than 25 years of working with taxpayers and ensuring that their property is protected.

Call JacksonWhite at (480) 464-1111 to discuss your case today.

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