Who is the Ideal Tax Whistleblower under the IRS Whistleblower Reward Program?
The ideal Tax Whistleblower is the attorney, accountant (CPA), CFO, CEO, tax director, or any other individual with the inside information and knowledge as to the taxpayer's underpayment of tax. They typically have a close relationship with the taxpayer. The tax attorneys of TWLF are the experienced and knowledgeable attorneys for the serious tax whistleblower.
Who can be a Whistleblower?
Initially individuals question whether they have a valid whistleblower claim under the IRS Whistleblower Program. The ideal Whistleblower is the person with "inside" information that knows there is an underpayment of tax of $2,000,000 or more. It is not the person who simply "believes," or "thinks" there is an underpayment of tax.
If you are not sure if your case qualifies, please simply call us or fill out the contact form. We will be happy to answer your questions and assist you in making your decision in filing a whistleblower claim whether you decide to work with us or not. As the attorneys of the TWLF prepare claims on behalf of its clients, we prepare them such that we too are convinced that if the IRS acts and audits the taxpayer, it will collect $2,000,000 or more in tax, penalties and interest.
Are documents necessary to support a Whistleblower Claim?
Documents certainly will backup and give credibility to the factual allegations of the whistleblower as to the underpayment of tax. Many individuals have documents stored on their computer or taken from their workplace. The IRS stated within Notice CC-2008-011, that they may receive stolen documents if they receive them in a passive capacity. Hence, stolen documents that substantiate the underpayment of tax will be accepted by the IRS if properly presented through the Claim process.
What qualities does a Tax Whistleblower typically possess?
We have found that Tax Whistleblowers are generally highly intelligent individuals. Not only must they be in tune with the taxpayer's underpayment of tax and the violation of the underlying substantive tax law, they must also be aware of their ability to collect an award of 15% to 30% of the tax collected by the IRS if they substantially contribute to the IRS assessment and collection of tax. In addition, they must have patience. These whistleblower claims are complicated matters and take years (5 years - 7 years on average) to complete. Often there is little communication from the IRS as to the status of the claim during the process other than "the claim remains open." Our history as experienced tax whistleblower attorneys allow us to often give clients some idea of the status of their claim based upon "debriefing" meetings with the IRS, telephone calls with Subject Matter Experts, reviewing public filings (i.e. 10K) by the taxpayers, length of time the claim has been pending, etc.
What does a Whistleblower need to have a "great" claim?
Our job is to help formulate a great claim. We will ask questions and do our own (factual and legal) research. We need a Whistleblower to have detailed inside information about the underpayment of tax. Documentation is a great plus to any whistleblower claim. We will assist the Whistleblower in determining how the IRS should go about obtaining information or documents if they are not in possession of the Whistleblower. The Attorneys at TWLF will identify any weaknesses in the Claim and address those weaknesses. If the Whistleblower knows of the taxpayer defenses as to the underpayment of tax, then the attorneys at TWLF will identify those defenses and show the weaknesses of such defenses.
Does a Whistleblower's identity have to be disclosed?
Yes, to their attorney and to the IRS. Attorney - Client privilege protects the Whistleblower's identity with Tax Whistleblower Law Firm. In addition, TWLF takes a number of precautionary steps to protect the identity of its clients such as representing them before the IRS such that all IRS communication (phone calls, faxes, emails, and U.S. postal mail) is received at TWLF office and does not go directly to the client. We ensure that we will get the information to our clients immediately through email or through other secret agreed means of communications. All files and documentation are stored electronically off premises of the TWLF office with several levels of passwords. All cases are assigned an office number and a pseudonym and are never referred to in any manner by the whistleblower's name or the taxpayer's name. We take a number of other steps on a case by case basis to protect our client's identity.
IRS stated position is - Confidentiality of Claimant's Identity
TWLF, consisting of former IRS attorneys, prepares every claim such that the Whistleblower will not be needed as a witness should the examination ultimately result in a trial . TWLF has been successful at this and will continue to be in the future. Our goal is to have the claim package "speak for itself." However, if, as former IRS attorneys, we determine that your testimony might be necessary as we put the claim together, we will let you know that prior to filing the claim, allowing you to make the decision to go forward or not. Otherwise, our experience with the submission of hundreds of Claims is that the IRS has instituted numerous procedures and is very successful in protected the Whistleblower's identity. Even when the IRS begins an examination of the taxpayer's return, the IRS proceeds in such a manner that the taxpayer has no idea that the examination is based upon a Whistleblower's information.