What are the odds? Are you game?

jimWilsonTaxing Matters
with Jim Wilson

“You got to know when to hold em, know when to fold em, know when to walk away, know when to run. You never count your money when you’re sitting at the table, there will be time enough for counting when the dealin’s done.”

Those are words from “The Gambler” and they speak a depth of wisdom. As millions of Americans raced to meet the April 15 tax deadline, there was some news for them. Their chances of getting audited are lower than they have been in years — since 1980 to be exact. Why? Budget cuts and new responsibilities are straining the Internal Revenue Service’s ability to police tax returns. Sounds like a ploy, does it not?

This year, the IRS will have fewer agents auditing returns than at any time since at least the 1980s. That is the word from the IRS and Washington. But do you want to gamble with your reputation? What if there were no audits? What if the IRS enforcement division just packed up and left? Should it make a difference?

“Character” is defined as doing the right thing, even if no one will ever know.

While the preparation of taxes and paying the government is always an arduous chore, it is even more so now, because taxpayer services are suffering. There is a shortage in the IRS staff who assist tax preparers by recording CPA requests for assistance. The Service says millions of phone calls to the IRS are not being answered.

It does not help people think more highly of the IRS when they hear that some agents do not pay their own taxes but receive bonuses. Those bonuses were paid with taxpayer funds. It just doesn’t add up, does it?

“We keep going after the people who look like the worst of the bad guys,” IRS Commissioner John Koskinen said in an interview.

“But there are going to be some people that we should catch, either in terms of collecting the revenue from them or prosecuting them, that we’re not going to catch.” But remember, there is no statute of limitations on fraud.

For more information, please call Wilson & Wilson, PC, CPA, CFE at 615-673-1330 or send an email to us at jim@wilsonandwilsoncpa.com.