Tax Fraud Tuesdays: The Dirty Dozen #10

Each year, the Internal Revenue Service compiles a list of the 12 most common, dangerous or costly tax scams. They call this list their “dirty dozen” and recommend that taxpayers stay vigilant during tax season. We will summarize these twelve scams for you, and highlight the steps you should take to protect yourself.

A variety of frivolous tax arguments have been made over the years by people looking to avoid paying taxes to the Federal government. The IRS has put together a list (along with legal rebuttals) of some common arguments seen, including taxpayers claiming they have rejected citizenship, claiming that paying taxes is voluntary, claiming a moral exemption, claiming the IRS is not legitimate, claiming only employees of the Federal government must pay taxes, or even claiming they are not a “person”! Ignore anyone who argues you should use one of these tactics in your interactions with the IRS. These arguments will not stand in court, and you may be subject to criminal prosecution.

Taxpayers certainly have the right to contest tax liabilities, but they must do this legally. There are appeals procedures and methods which are recognized by the IRS. However, making one of the frivolous arguments will not only result in a quick judgment against the taxpayer but can bring about a $5,000 fine for filing a frivolous tax return.