The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has awarded Bradley Birkenfeld – a tax cheat and whistleblower – $104 million for providing information about UBS’s promotion of secret offshore accounts to U.S. taxpayers. Mr. Birkenfeld had recently been released from jail after serving a portion of a 40-month sentence after pleading guilty to withholding information about his own role in the Swiss bank scheme.
The disclosure of Swiss banking information set off a panic among wealthy Americans and more than of them entered a tax amnesty program. According to the IRS the amnesty program has helped recover more than $5 billion in unpaid taxes.
Mr. Birkenfeld’s award was paid under a 2006 law passed by Congress that awards whistleblowers up to 30 percent of the revenue they help to recover with the information that they supply to the IRS. The 2006 targets high-income tax cheats, guaranteeing rewards for qualified whistleblowers if the company in question owes at least $2 million in unpaid taxes, interest and penalties.
If you have offshore accounts that have not been disclosed to the IRS call Hone Maxwell LLP today.