Chicago, IL criminal defense attorney Gal Pissetzky talks about the various defenses available to someone charged with tax evasion.
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So tax evasion is a very broad crime. There are many types of prosecutions under tax evasion. And again, they are usually federal prosecution. You originally are investigated by the IRS or SEC for some type of a tax crime. You know that you are being investigated because the IRS does not charge you right away; they try to talk to you, they do their own investigation. If you evade the IRS, if you evade resolving the issues with the IRS, or if you believe that you did not commit what they are accusing you of, then your case may get to federal court. In federal court, you will present the defense that you were going to present to the IRS if you believe that you did not commit what they are accusing you of.
For example, if you have a corporation that you do not believe owes the certain tax that the IRS thinks that it owes because it’s not an American corporation and you do not need to pay tax to the United States Government, that is a defense. If you rely on your accountant or on a team of other people to advise you of tax laws that are extremely complicated here in the United States, that may rise to the level of a defense. So there’s many options for people that are being accused by the IRS to challenge the accusations.