A Chicago tax lawyer says his client simply forgot about the $32 million he had stashed away in an offshore bank account, according to a report on the Chicago Tribune’s website.
See, this is why we the IRS has an amnesty program for people who simply can’t keep track of all of their assets after hiding them for so many years.
Robert McKenzie of Arnstein & Lehr told the Tribune he’s representing 78 people who want to come clean about their secret offshore accounts under the soon-to-expire program.
“The question I ask my clients is, ‘What’s it worth to sleep at night?’” McKenzie told Tribune blogger and reporter Ameet Sachdev.
Of course, it’s easy to sleep at night if you really can’t remember your $32 million offshore account.
The IRS is extending the deadline on its tax amnesty program – originally set to expire this week – until Oct. 15. The IRS says it’s to give tax cheats – I mean, you know, guys who just forgot – to get their paperwork together.
So far, more than 3,000 people have lined up for the program, which offers reduced penalties and no jail time. The IRS says it will not extend the program again. Click here to read more of those details in a report by the Associated Press.
The program may be a sign of just how bad the economy has really gotten
When the economy was humming a long, and everybody was getting rich from stock options and mortgages, the IRS did not seem the least bit concerned about offshore bank accounts. Now, instead of dinking around with little offshore banks in the Caribbean, it’s gone right for the jugular at Swiss banking giant, UBS AG.
In August, UBS agreed to turn over details on 4,450 accounts suspected of holding undeclared assets from American customers. In February it to pay a $780 million fine and turn over up to 300 client names.
The IRS is trying to send a clear message: The days of dodging taxes via offshore bank accounts is over. Pay up. We’ve got an $11 trillion deficit over here on the mainland.