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Catch of the Week – B&H Photo Video Sued by NY State for Tax Fraud

Posted  11/15/19
Modern mobile devices
This week’s Catch of the Week brings us back to the Big Apple, where New York Attorney General Letitia James joined a whistleblower lawsuit yesterday accusing the nation’s largest non-chain photo and video equipment retailer, B&H Photo Video, of tax fraud. The suit claims that long-time camera and electronics retailer B&H, which had more than $3 billion in revenue last year, knowingly failed to pay over $7...

How to Become an IRS Whistleblower

Posted  10/16/19
IRS Whistleblower

Answers to Common Questions from Prospective IRS Whistleblowers

Although the New York False Claims Act allows whistleblowers to bring lawsuits based on violations of the state’s tax laws, the federal False Claims Act (FCA) specifically excludes tax claims. Fortunately, the Tax Relief and Health Care Act of 2006 created an IRS Whistleblower Office dedicated to working with whistleblowers. Deciding to be a...

Promising Changes to IRS Whistleblower Program – Tax Whistleblowers Now Protected Against Retaliation and Improved Communication when Reporting Tax Violations

Posted  08/21/19
man with red smoke
Recent legislation marks a potential huge step forward for the IRS Whistleblower Program, which offers rewards of 15 to 30% of government recoveries to whistleblowers who report tax avoidance.  The Taxpayer First Act (TFA), which came into force on July 1, 2019 introduced key reforms that should benefit whistleblowers reporting tax evasion and underreporting. A few months ago, the IRS Whistleblower Office released...

Legal Sports Betting Is Leading to Serious Fraud Risks

Posted  05/31/19
man holding cell phone to place sports bet
With the NBA finals upon us, you may be thinking putting down some cash on one team or the other. Thanks to a Supreme Court decision last year, your state may even allow such bets. And no wonder. Illegal sports betting is a gigantic industry—estimated at $150 billion a year, it eclipses the $5 billion legally gambled in Nevada. Much of that money goes into the hands of mafia interests, who increasingly use online...

The Latest on Cryptocurrency, Offshore Tax Avoidance and Money-Laundering, and Whistleblowing: A Report from OffshoreAlert Miami 2019

Posted  05/3/19
Hanging Hundred Dollar Bills on Clothes Line
“A diverse collection of the hunters and the hunted.” That’s how the Wall Street Journal described the OffshoreAlert Conference in 2009. The 2019 conference was no different, bringing together those who work in the offshore industry, the government enforcers who try to stop the unscrupulous among them, and the asset recovery professionals who pursue lost funds. Alongside them were whistleblowers and their...

Annual 2018 IRS Whistleblower Program Report

Posted  03/25/19
IRS Logo with American Eagle
Tax whistleblowers and those who believe that no one should be able to lie, cheat, or buy their way out of paying their tax bills got some good news in the IRS Whistleblower Office’s report last month on the 2018 fiscal year. Notably, the IRS issued 217 whistleblower awards totaling over $312 million, a nearly tenfold increase over the prior year. That’s an enormous shot in the arm for what should be a highly...

Canada Makes First Securities Fraud Whistleblower Award

Posted  03/6/19
Canadian maple leaf flag in cloth with draping
The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) announced last week roughly CAD $7.5 million in whistleblower awards to three individuals who reported violations of Ontario securities laws.  The awards are the first ever by a Canadian securities regulator.  In keeping with its commitment to protecting the confidentiality of whistleblowers, the OSC did not disclose any information that might reveal the whistleblowers'...

Top Ten Tax Recoveries of 2018

Posted  01/18/19
Person in suit using calculator while examining documents in binder with magnifying glass
Tax fraud and tax evasion can take many forms, but there is one constant: when entities and individuals pay less tax than they owe, they are cheating the system. Bringing cases against companies and individuals that cheat the system is central to the Internal Revenue Service's mission. Tax fraud may also give rise to a claim under the IRS Whistleblower Reward Program, which pays eligible whistleblowers 15 to 30% of...

Constantine Cannon Attorneys Eric Havian and Michael Ronickher Published in Law360 on the Need for Anti-Money Laundering Whistleblower Rewards

Posted  12/12/18
In the wake of anti-money laundering enforcement activity spurred by the Panama Papers, Constantine Cannon attorneys Eric Havian and Michael Ronickher published an article in Law360 on why we need an anti-money laundering whistleblower program. Havian and Ronickher argue for a new, DOJ-led whistleblower program to close the “large enforcement gap” left open by the existing IRS and SEC programs: “Domestic law...

Listen: Taxcast’s November 2018 Podcast on How Governments Can Better Protect and Encourage Whistleblowers

Posted  12/7/18
Constantine Cannon partner Mary Inman is featured in the Tax Justice Network’s November podcast on, among other things, whistleblowing on tax fraud. Inman discusses the impact of U.S. whistleblower laws on corporate wrongdoing and white collar enforcement and speaks to improvements governments can make to better protect whistleblowers, encourage whistleblowers to bring evidence to their governments, and financially...
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