J. Timothy Bender

Buckley King Co., L.P.A.
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  • Tax Law
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Buckley King Co., L.P.A.
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5 Questions Answered

Q. Can you go to jail for filing an incorrect number on your business's tax returns if it was an honest mistake?
A: In order to be prosecuted for either tax evasion, or filing a false return, there has to be evidence of an intent to evade tax. If it is an honest mistake, there is little chance of being prosecuted as the intent to defraud the government is not present. The IRS usually will not refer a case for prosecution unless there are at least two years successive years in which the tax liability is understated so that mistake cannot be raised as a defense. If it is truly an honest mistake and it only occurs in one year, there is little chance of taxpayer being prosecuted unless it is a large mistake that is apparent on the face of the return from which intent can be inferred. If you are concerned, why don't you file an amended tax return correcting the mistake? If you file an amended return prior to being contacted by IRS, there is almost no chance you could be prosecuted.
Q. where do I find USTC case "Hancock (T. C. Memo 2012-31) ?
A: Go to the website for the US Tax Court (www.ustacourt.gov), click on the Opinion Search tab. Put Hancock in the name box and hit Search. It is the first case listed in the results.
Q. What are the tax benefits of setting up a trust?
A: For most people, there is no income tax advantage to establishing a trust. Under certain circumstances there may be gift or estate tax benefits. You need to have a tax expert look at your particular circumstances to determine if there is a benefit for you before you consider setting up a trust. Most trusts are established for estate tax purposes and/or for non-tax reasons.
Q. What amount qualifies for the federal gift tax?
A: I believe you are asking about the annual gift tax exclusion amount. For 2017 a person can give $14,000 to an individual without there being a taxable gift.
Q. How much property can you transfer to a non-relative without tax implications?
A: The lifetime estate and gift tax exemption amount for 2017 is $5,490,000. The annual gift tax exclusion for 2017 is $14,000 and is unrelated to the lifetime exemption. In other words, the $5.49 million exemption amount is not reduced by annual gifts of $14,000 or less.
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