Cancellation of Debt

If a debt is canceled or forgiven, other than as a gift or bequest, the debtor generally must include the canceled amount in gross income for tax purposes. A debt includes any indebtedness for which the debtor is liable or which attaches to property the debtor holds.

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Money Laundering and Foreign Bank Accounts

Under the Bank Secrecy Act, U.S. residents or a person in and doing business in the United States must file a report with the U.S. Treasury if he or she has a financial account in a foreign country with a value exceeding $10,000 at any time during the calendar year. Taxpayers comply with this law by noting the account on their tax return and by filing Form 90-22.1, the Foreign Bank and Financial Account Report (FBAR). Willfully failing to file an FBAR report can be punished under both civil and criminal law.

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Who Gets Audited by IRS

The total number of audits of individual returns increased in 2010. Those who earned less than $200,000 had about a 1 percent chance of being audited. Those with incomes of $200,000 and more had about a 3 percent chance of being audited.

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Audit Representation During Audit

Many tax controversies are better resolved sooner rather than later. Accordingly, it is often to your client’s advantage for you to begin work on the case promptly. Your first goal should be to accurately gather the necessary information. You must control this information gathering process. Otherwise, the client will often inundate you with reams of useless information while neglecting to hand over truly important documents. The initial interview with the client is an important step in your preparation for audit.

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Innocent Spouse

SPOUSAL RELIEF  By Robert E, McKenzie   ©2011   Custom Search Although many taxpayers enjoy substantial tax benefits from filing joint returns, those benefits may be outweighed when a tax deficiency or unpaid balance is asserted for a return. The…

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