2014 Update for Voluntary Disclosure

Credit Suisse Agrees to Pay 2.6 Billion - Admits to Helping U.S. Taxpayers Hide Offshore Accounts from IRS

After years of investigation by U.S. law enforcement authorities, Credit Suisse has entered into a plea agreement with the United States Government admitting that it conspired to help U.S. taxpayers use secret Swiss bank accounts to hide offshore assets and evade U.S. taxes.  The statement of facts set forth in the plea agreement provides that Credit Suisse engaged in a number of activities designed to assist their U.S. clients in shielding undeclared foreign accounts.  

These actions range from helping clients use sham entities to conceal undisclosed accounts and “soliciting IRS forms that falsely stated. . .that the sham entities were the beneficial owners of the assets in the accounts” to failing to maintain account records and destroying records sent to U.S. clients for their review.

Under the terms of the agreement, Credit Suisse will plead guilty to various illegal financial activities and pay more than 2.6 billion dollars in fines: $1.8 billion dollars to the U.S. Department of Justice for the U.S. Treasury, $100 million dollars to the Federal Reserve, and $715 million dollars to the New York State Department of Financial Services.   

Additionally, the Department of Justice has explained that Credit Suisse has agreed to close the accounts of individuals and companies that fail to come into compliance with U.S. disclosure requirements and turn over detailed information to the U.S. government about other banks that may have shifted assets into secret bank accounts or accepted funds when secret accounts were shut down.

This landmark case demonstrates that all financial institutions, regardless of how large or powerful they may be, are still subject to the laws of the United States.  Any business or individual who participates in illegal financial activities with an overseas bank is now open to both potential criminal investigation and severe fines and penalties.  

As a result of the outcome in this case, our New Jersey voluntary disclosure attorneys anticipate that many overseas banks will be reporting account information and the identities of U.S. account holders to the United States government out of the fear of possible criminal prosecution.  The United States government has made it perfectly clear that it will fully investigate and prosecute illegal conduct designed to hide offshore assets and evade U.S. tax responsibilities.

Advising Clients on Sensitive Offshore Bank Account Matters

At Thorn Law Group our experienced New Jersey voluntary disclosure attorneys represent clients in the greater New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Philadelphia region, across the United States and around the world dealing with complex and sensitive offshore bank account matters.  Our firm strongly recommends that all U.S. taxpayers with unreported offshore accounts act quickly to seek out the advice of a skilled tax attorney to bring their accounts into full compliance with U.S. laws and regulations.  

Our skilled tax law team has years of experience helping clients make voluntary disclosures of previously unreported foreign accounts and assets through the IRS Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program.  The penalties associated with failing to properly disclose offshore accounts, trusts or companies can be devastating.  Taxpayers who elect to make a complete and voluntary disclosure through the IRS amnesty program may be able to avoid potential criminal prosecution and reduce their financial fines and penalties.  

Contact a New Jersey Voluntary Disclosure Lawyer

To learn more about the terms of the Credit Suisse plea agreement or to discuss the IRS Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program with an experienced New Jersey IRS voluntary disclosure attorney at our firm, contact Kevin E. Thorn, Managing Partner of Thorn Law Group at 201-355-8202.



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