Why Use The Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program?

The sooner, the better. However, you should participate before the IRS finds you or ends the OVDP. If the IRS finds you, it may be too late. Each second you delay is costing you more money and substantially increasing your risk of being detected and exposed to possible criminal prosecution. How long can you afford to do nothing?

A key element of participating in the IRS Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program is timing. When a taxpayer makes a voluntary disclosure, the IRS also considers if the taxpayer took corrective action in good faith and in a timely manner; therefore, time is of the essence. Even if you are unsure of the status of your foreign or offshore accounts, you can still be proactive and prevent a possible IRS audit or worse, by trying to settle your outstanding tax issues.

Taxpayers with undisclosed foreign accounts or assets should take advantage of the IRS Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program while there is still opportunity. The tax attorneys at Bucci Law Offices can guide you through the application process and analyze the potential tax consequences. However, you must act fast before the IRS closes the door on this OVDP.

Another reason time is of the essence is because the IRS and Department of Justice (DOJ) have been increasingly relentless in pursuing investigations due to the significant cooperation they are receiving from non-U.S. banks. The Department of Justice announced a program specifically for Swiss banks that aided secret account holders, and the countries sharing information with the U.S. is increasing.

What About Accounts In Countries Other Than Switzerland?

It is not only Swiss bank account owners who should be worried. Banks that are cooperating are no longer limited to the large Swiss bank's everyone thinks of when dealing with offshore accounts. Israeli, Japanese and European banks, as well as banks found in Liechtenstein, the Cayman Islands, Luxembourg, the Isle of Man, Jersey, Bermuda, the Bahamas and Singapore, are all cooperating, either voluntarily or involuntarily. These are just some of the countries cooperating. Additionally, many non-U.S. banks, including UBS, Credit Suisse, Bank Leumi, Bank Hapoalim, HSBC, Bank Julius Baer, British Virgin Islands (BVI) Bank, CIBC First Caribbean International Bank, Cayman National Bank and BSI are encouraging U.S. taxpayer account holders to come forward to the IRS before it is too late.

Once the IRS believes an offshore bank holds unreported accounts owned by U.S. taxpayers, it can begin the process to obtain information and records related to both current and former accounts to allow them to target an investigation into undeclared assets.