Maybe you knew what you were doing, with your aggressive refund-seeking tax prep business. Or maybe you thought you wouldn’t get in trouble for helping poor people get a little bigger tax refund.
But now you’re facing a criminal sentence and a possible restitution order. Can the feds really do this to you?
At Brown, PC, we can counsel you effectively in responding to this daunting situation. Give us a call today for a confidential consultation about your specific situation. Based in Dallas-Fort Worth, our attorneys help clients across the county.
When Are Restitution Orders Allowed?
Restitution is not generally ordered in criminal tax cases. Instead, prosecutors at the Department Of Justice let the IRS pursue that remedy through a civil, not criminal, process.
Recently, however, federal judges have started to use restitution orders more often to go along with criminal convictions. This can be done as a condition of probation or supervised release from prison.
If this happens, you can suddenly find yourself owing the government more money than you ever imagined. The IRS might use the criminal restitution order to make a civil assessment against you and start trying to collect – just like it would a tax debt.
Nor is the IRS the only agency that might be reaching for a piece of your pie. The U.S. Attorney’s Office that prosecuted you could turn your case over to its Financial Litigation Unit.
In short, if you’re a tax preparer who got nailed for refund fraud or another criminal offense, you are looking at a potentially huge liability. You’re up against an opponent that may try to run up the score against you by adding up every penny of the tax loss to the government from the refund tactics you used on behalf of your clients.
Once they’ve done that calculation, and gotten a conviction, the government could seek a hefty restitution order for you to pay it all back – even if you don’t have the money to do so.
How We Can Help You Respond
Led by attorney Lawrence Brown, a former Justice Department trial attorney, we can advise you on the steps to take to push back. We know that once restitution is imposed, the government can bring enforcement proceedings, making demands for asset discovery and moving to seize your property.
We can use our knowledge of applicable laws to negotiate a payment arrangement with the government before enforcement proceedings are initiated. This can produce a more favorable result and save you a lot of time and money. Call our office for a confidential consultation with a knowledgeable lawyer or, if you prefer, complete the online form.