It’s common to make mistakes when paying taxes. Unfortunately, such mistakes can result in significant consequences. In some instances it can even result in criminal penalties. It is therefore important to take great care whenever filing any sort of tax form.
It is important to remember that the IRS encourages individuals not in compliance with tax laws to voluntarily come forward to resolve these issues. In fact, the IRS will take a voluntary disclosure into account when deciding upon any criminal penalties. In some instances, showing a willingness to correct an issue can lead to the IRS treating you more kindly.
The IRS will distinguish between innocent mistakes and knowingly failing to file proper returns. The knowing failure to pay taxes could result in criminal charges and conviction. Other actions could result in criminal charges as well. For example, receiving income from an illegal source may result in close scrutiny.
The IRS particularly will look for consistent noncompliance regarding tax returns and the failure to comply with requests for additional information. The IRS already has in place various programs to identify individuals who do not file taxes. The IRS may consider the failure to file returns over a period of years as evidence of fraud – especially after the agency made repeated efforts to reach you.
As the IRS does offer delinquent taxpayers options for paying back taxes, it can be useful to speak to an experienced tax attorney who can outline your legal options. This may include an offer to compromise or paying back your taxes through a manageable installment plan. It is important, however, for Michigan taxpayers to not ignore the situation and believe it will go away.