2018 Post-OVDP Options | Foreign Accounts IRS Lawyer & Attorney

In a previous article, I discussed the recent IRS announcement with respect to the closure of the IRS Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (“OVDP”) on September 28, 2018. Today, I would like to predict the range of the 2018 post-OVDP options for offshore voluntary disclosures starting October of 2018.

2018 Post-OVDP Options: Streamlined Compliance Procedures

As of October 1, 2018, taxpayers will still be able to utilize the Streamlined Compliance Procedures to complete their voluntary disclosures with respect to their foreign income and foreign assets. This option will be available only to taxpayers who will be able to certify that their prior noncompliance with US international tax laws was non-willful.

There are two variations within the Streamlined Compliance Procedures that are available to taxpayers depending on their residency: Streamlined Domestic Offshore Procedures (“SDOP”) and Streamlined Foreign Offshore Procedures (“SFOP”). I expect both options to be available on October 1, 2018 and even into 2019.

I should emphasize, however, that the existence of Streamlined Compliance Procedures is by no means assured in the future. As I have stated in the article that predicted the demise of the OVDP, there may be a point in the future (and it can be a near future – 2020 or 2021) when even these procedures will be affected. It is more likely that SFOP will survive for a longer period of time than SDOP.

The other issue with Streamlined Compliance Procedures is that some of the terms of these type of voluntary disclosures may change over time even if SDOP and SFOP will remain in place.

Nevertheless, the Streamlined Compliance Procedures is a very popular option.  In fact, according to the IRS, about 65,000 taxpayers have used it since its creation in 2014). This is a very high dis-incentive for the IRS to end this option.

2018 Post-OVDP Options: Delinquent FBAR Submission Procedures

I fully expect the Delinquent FBAR Submission Procedures to be available as of October 1, 2018. In one form or another, this option has always existed within the IRS. First, it was an informal understanding of the IRS that, in the absence of income tax noncompliance and other aggravating factors, there would be no FBAR penalties. Then, this option was “codified” as FAQ #17 within the OVDP programs.

In 2014, the Delinquent FBAR Submission Procedures became an independent option. Of course, now, this is a somewhat harsher option.

2018 Post-OVDP Options: Delinquent International Information Return Submission Procedures

I expect that this option will continue to exist as of October 1, 2018. Similarly to FBAR, it used to be a part of various OVDPs as FAQ #18. Now, Delinquent International Information Return Submission Procedures is a separate option which requires a reasonable cause explanation.

2018 Post-OVDP Options: IRS-Criminal Investigation Voluntary Disclosure Program (CI-VDP)

This option has existed for a very long time; it just faded into obscurity during the existence of OVDP. Now, it will surge back to life as it becomes almost the default option for a voluntary disclosure for US taxpayers who willfully violated their US tax obligations. In fact, I now expect CI-VDP to become a very valuable voluntary disclosure option (similar to what it used to be prior to 2009 OVDP).

2018 Post-OVDP Options: Reasonable Cause “Noisy” Disclosures

Since Reasonable Cause Disclosures (a/k/a “Noisy Disclosures”) are based on statutory law and not on any IRS programs, I fully expect this voluntary disclosure option to be available on October 1, 2018.

Contact Sherayzen Law Office for Professional Help With the Voluntary Disclosure of Your Foreign Assets and Foreign Income

If you have been unable to comply with US international tax laws concerning the reporting of foreign assets (including foreign accounts) and foreign income, contact Sherayzen Law Office for professional help.

Sherayzen Law Office is a leading international tax law firm in the area of offshore voluntary disclosures. Our highly specialized legal team, led by an international tax attorney Mr. Eugene Sherayzen, has helped hundreds of US taxpayers with assets in close to 70 countries to bring their tax affairs into full compliance with US tax laws.

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Mistake as Reasonable Cause | Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Lawyer

This article is a continuation of a series of articles on the Reasonable Cause Exception as a defense against various IRS penalties. Today, we will be exploring whether a mistake made by a taxpayer satisfies the ordinary business care and prudence standard and can be considered a reasonable cause.

Mistake Alone Does Not Constitute Reasonable Cause

Generally, the IRS takes the view that a mistake alone is not sufficient to establish a reasonable cause defense to an imposition of an IRS penalty, because it is not considered to be a conduct that would qualify as ordinary business care and prudence – i.e. generally, situations when a taxpayer acted prudently, reasonably and in good faith (taking that degree of care that a reasonably prudent person would exercise) and still could not comply with the relevant tax requirement.  We remind the readers that the ordinary business care and prudence standard is at the heart of the Reasonable Cause Exception.

Mistake Can Help Establish Reasonable Cause

While a taxpayer’s mistake alone is insufficient to establish a reasonable cause, the Internal Revenue Manual (IRM) specifically foresees a possibility that a mistake can help assert a reasonable cause defense. IRM 20.1.1.3.2.2.4 (12-11-2009) specifically states that the Reasonable Cause Exception may be established if mistake with “additional facts and circumstances support the determination that the taxpayer exercised ordinary business care and prudence but nevertheless was unable to comply within the prescribed time”.

In other words, if mistake, in combination with other facts and circumstances, established that a taxpayer’s behavior was consistent with the ordinary business care and prudence standard, the IRS may agree that the tax noncompliance was caused by a reasonable cause.

IRS Factors Supporting Mistake as a Reasonable Cause

IRM 20.1.1.3.2.2.4 (12-11-2009) does not limit the number of factors that will be considered by the IRS in deciding whether there are sufficient facts and circumstances supporting mistake as a reasonable cause. However, it provides five specific factors to which the IRS will pay special attention:

1. When and how the taxpayer became aware of the mistake;

2. The extent to which the taxpayer corrected the error;

3. The relationship between the taxpayer and the subordinate (if the taxpayer delegated the duty);

4. If the taxpayer took timely steps to correct the failure after it was discovered;

5. The supporting documentation.

Contact Sherayzen Law Office for Professional Legal Help with Establishing a Reasonable Cause Exception in Your Case

If the IRS imposed a penalty for your prior tax noncompliance, contact Sherayzen Law Office for the legal help. We will thoroughly review the facts of your case, determine available defense options, including the Reasonable Cause Exception defenses, implement the case strategy with which you feel comfortable, and negotiate the abatement or reduction of your IRS penalties.

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Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Madison | FATCA OVDP Lawyer

In today’s world connected through an invisible network of new technologies, a great number of persons prefer to choose an attorney based on his qualities rather than his state of residence. The residents of Madison, Wisconsin, similarly search for such an attorney, especially in the area of Streamlined compliance procedures by utilizing the search words: Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Madison.

The question is whether an attorney in Minneapolis falls within the search for Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Madison. Furthermore, is there an ethical problem? – i.e. does a Minnesota attorney’s license extend to help clients in Madison with respect to Streamlined Compliance Procedures? Let’s answer all of these questions in this article.

Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Madison Search Includes Attorneys Who Reside in Another State

The answer to the first question is “yes’ – the search for Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Madison includes an attorney whose residence is in Minneapolis as long as this attorney offers his services in Madison to help clients with international tax law issues.

There can be no doubt that an attorney in Minneapolis is objectively (i.e. setting aside the personal qualities and the level of competence that naturally differ from attorney to attorney even within Madison) qualified to provide services in Madison. On the technological side, the improvements in modern communications technology with online video conferences and email, combined with the traditional express mail, have completely eliminated the logistical and administrative differences between a local attorney in Madison and an attorney from Minneapolis who offers his Streamlined Compliance Procedures services in Madison.

On the legal side, the difference never even existed. While there are still many local Madison legal issues concerning local and state law where local attorneys hold a decisive advantage over out-of-state attorneys, this is not the case when it comes to Streamlined Compliance Procedures. This is because Streamlined Compliance Procedures is a purely federal law with zero Madison or even Wisconsin influence. In fact, these procedures constitute an IRS program within the regulatory framework of the much larger US international tax law.

This means that a search for a Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Madison is really a search for an international tax attorney who deals with the Streamlined Compliance Procedures and helps clients in Madison. There is no requirement that the Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Madison actually resides in Madison.

Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Madison Search Applies to Any US International Tax Attorney Without Any License Limitations

The answer to the second question – whether there are any license limitations for a Minnesota attorney to offer international tax services related to Streamlined Compliance Procedures to clients in Madison – is clear from the discussion above: no, there are no attorney license limitations in this case.

Again, the search for Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Madison is a search for an international tax attorney for a specific US international tax law issue. In fact, a search for Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Madison can be easily replaced by a search for a broader category of International Tax Attorney Madison. There is simply no specific local input from City of Madison or the State of Wisconsin, and, theoretically, any attorney licensed to practice in the United States can practice federal tax law.

Of course, in practice, only highly specialized international tax attorneys are competent enough to practice in the area of US international tax law. The number of such attorneys is extremely small; this means that the persons who search for a Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Madison must necessarily broaden their search to attorneys who reside in other states in order to have a real chance for choosing the right Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Madison.

Sherayzen Law Office Offers Services Related to Streamlined Compliance Procedures and Can Be Your Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Madison

Sherayzen Law Office is an international tax law firm that specializes in all types of offshore voluntary disclosure, including Streamlined Compliance Procedures. Our professional tax team, headed by Mr. Eugene Sherayzen, is highly experienced in helping US clients around the globe with their US international tax issues, including voluntary disclosure of foreign accounts and other foreign assets. This why Sherayzen Law Office should be considered as a top candidate when you search for Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Madison.

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Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Indianapolis | IRS OVDP Lawyer

Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Indianapolis is a common search by US taxpayers who are looking for legal help in Indianapolis with their streamlined voluntary disclosure of undeclared foreign assets and foreign income. Let’s analyze this search term – Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Indianapolis – to identify the type of attorney that fits this search best.

Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Indianapolis Search Applies to SDOP and SFOP

The first point to note is that the search for Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Indianapolis includes all attorneys who help clients with both SDOP (Streamlined Domestic Offshore Procedures) and SFOP (Streamlined Foreign Offshore Procedures).

Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Indianapolis Search Is Really a Search for an International Tax Attorney

Second, when a taxpayer is looking for a Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Indianapolis, he is really searching for an international tax attorney. SFOP, SDOP, OVDP, FBAR, Form 8938, et cetera – all of these programs and forms are just small parts of the much larger US international tax law which can be only practiced by a US international tax attorney.

Moreover, this attorney must understand not only these small parts of the international tax law, but also how SDOP and SFOP fit into the framework of US international tax law, how the IRS and FinCEN international tax information returns interact with the rest of the US tax laws and Treasury regulations, and how this interaction influences his client’s legal position with respect to SDOP and SFOP.

Hence, a search for Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Indianapolis can easily be replaced by a broader search for “International Tax Attorney Indianapolis”.

Sherayzen Law Office is an International Tax Law Firm that Falls Within the Search for Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Indianapolis

Sherayzen Law Office PLLC is an international tax law firm that specializes in all types of offshore voluntary disclosures, including SDOP and SFOP. Our legal team is highly experienced in helping US clients around the globe with their US international tax issues, including voluntary disclosure of foreign accounts and other foreign assets. This is why Sherayzen Law Office should be a top candidate when you search for Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Indianapolis!

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Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Austin | FATCA OVDP Lawyer

If you are a resident of Austin, Texas, and you have undisclosed foreign accounts, it is highly likely that you have searched for Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Austin. Let’s analyze this search term – Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Austin – to understand exactly what kind of an attorney fits this search.

Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Austin Search Applies to SDOP and SFOP

Let’s first look into the search for “Streamlined Disclosure”. In reality, this is a search for an attorney who offers legal help with respect to two types of Streamlined Filing Compliance Procedures: SDOP (Streamlined Domestic Offshore Procedures) and SFOP (Streamlined Foreign Offshore Procedures).

Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Austin Search Applies to Attorneys Who Offer Legal Services in Austin

Now, we need to analyze the geographical aspect of this search – i.e. Austin. What does it mean when one says that he is looking for an Austin attorney? Obviously, it applies to attorneys who reside in Austin and who offer streamlined disclosure services in Austin.

Furthermore, this search for a Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Austin also applies to attorneys who reside outside of Austin but offer their legal services to the residents of Austin. The reason for this conclusion lies in the federal nature of the Streamlined Filing Compliance Procedures – this is purely an IRS program and it has no local input from Austin (except the IRS office in the city). Since this is federal law, the actual residence of your Austin attorney does not matter.

What really matters is whether he offers legal services in Austin and whether he is competent in the matters concerning Streamlined Filing Compliance Procedures. This leads to the final part of the search for Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Austin – what kind of a specialized “attorney” are you searching for?

Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Austin Search Applies Only to International Tax Attorneys

By searching for Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Austin, you are really trying to find a very specific kind of an attorney – an international tax attorney. SFOP, SDOP, OVDP and any other voluntary disclosure options are just IRS programs (though, important programs) within the framework of the much larger legal area of US international tax law practice.

Hence, a Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Austin search is an attempt to find an international tax attorney who not only understands Streamlined Filing Compliance Procedures, but who also possesses deep understanding of the US international tax system, its laws and regulations, and the place SDOP and SFOP occupies within this system. This understanding is crucial to an attorney’s ability to properly analyze the case and choose the best legal strategy for his client.

Sherayzen Law Office can be Your International Tax Attorney

Sherayzen Law Office, Ltd. is an international tax law firm that specializes in all types of offshore voluntary disclosures, including OVDP, SDOP and SFOP. Our professional tax team, led by attorney Eugene Sherayzen, is highly experienced in helping US clients around the globe with their US international tax issues, including offshore voluntary disclosure. This is why Sherayzen Law Office should be your top candidate when you search for Streamlined Disclosure Attorney Austin.

Contact Us Today to Schedule Your Confidential Consultation!