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VOL. 126 | NO. 27 | Wednesday, February 09, 2011

IRS Reduces Penalties if Tax Cheats Come Clean

STEPHEN OHLEMACHER | The Associated Press

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WASHINGTON (AP) – The Internal Revenue Service is offering reduced penalties for international tax cheats who come clean.

IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman said Tuesday that people who are hiding assets overseas can avoid jail and pay reduced fines if they turn themselves in and pay back taxes by Aug. 31. The offer is similar to one the IRS made in 2009 that netted 15,000 tax evaders.

Shulman said the new offer won't be as generous because he doesn't want to reward tax cheats who waited two years to come forward.

The IRS has long had a policy that certain tax evaders can avoid jail as long as they come forward before they are contacted by the agency. But without the program, penalties can sometimes far exceed the value of hidden accounts.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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PROPERTY SALES 92 388 9,204
MORTGAGES 119 513 12,365
FORECLOSURE NOTICES 0 98 2,526
BUILDING PERMITS 0 960 20,801
BANKRUPTCIES 77 338 7,964
BUSINESS LICENSES 14 91 3,315
UTILITY CONNECTIONS 180 695 11,718
MARRIAGE LICENSES 33 147 2,815

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