The Department of Justice has announced that Keisha Stewart, a Plantation, FL tax preparer, has been barred from preparing federal tax returns for others. On March 20, 2014, a federal court in Ft. Lauderdale entered a final judgment of permanent injunction.
The complaint alleged that Stewart and her company Professional Tax Services prepared false income tax returns that inflated income or included fictitious income to qualify customers for earned income tax credits. The complaint further alleged that Stewart falsely claimed education and home and energy credits, head of household status, dependents, and child and additional child tax credits on her clients’ behalf to reduce their tax liabilities.
As you may recall in a recent blog, I discussed that both the IRS Criminal and Civil Investigation Division have been focused on stopping tax preparer fraud. Earlier in the year, a Chicago tax preparer, Verlean Hollins, plead guilty to aiding and assisting in the preparation of 3,200 false federal income tax returns. Stopping unscrupulous tax preparers has been a way for the government to close the tax gap.
Although return preparer misconduct can result in the tax preparer facing civil penalties, injunctions, and criminal prosecution, the taxpayers of those returns remain liable for the incorrect deductions and tax credits. Therefore, if you have not completed your 2013 tax return, be careful before filing your tax return.
When selecting your tax preparer, check his or her credentials and licensing status. You should perform an online search of state bar associations and accountancy boards to ensure that the return preparer or tax attorney has an active license. If the preparer is promoting large tax refunds, then watch out. Finally, you should review your 2013 tax return before you file it. If you do not understand the return, then sit down with your CPA and have them explain what was reported on your return.
If you have been harmed as a result of an unscrupulous tax preparer, the Law Offices of Todd S. Unger, Esq. can help. Call or email the Law Offices of Todd S. Unger, Esq. before your matter gets worse. By completing the contact form or calling the below number, you will receive a call or email from tax attorney Todd S. Unger, Esq. himself.
Call (877) 544-4743 or email Todd S. Unger today.