Tax Evasion in Capitola, California
"Tax Evasion" refers to the crime of willfully failing to pay one's taxes, as required by California law.
Normally, the strategy employed by tax evaders in Capitola, California is to try and make it look like they have less taxable income than they actually do. This can be done by failing to report income, concealing it, or fraudulently transferring property.
"Tax evasion" should not be confused with "tax avoidance." Tax evasion is the act of willfully attempting to get out of one's tax liability through prohibited means. Tax avoidance is perfectly legal, and involves utilizing legal strategies (such as taking advantage of deductions and tax credits) to reduce one's legal tax liability. However, someone engaging in tax avoidance typically intends to pay whatever they end up owing, even as they try to reduce the amount they owe.
Penalties for Tax Evasion in Capitola, California
Under the laws of California, as well as federal law, tax evasion is a very egregious criminal offense.
Punishments for evading one's taxes in Capitola range from paying back taxes plus interest (a relatively mild punishment) all the way up to years in prison, and penalties in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
In the majority of tax evasion cases, however, the punishments are not so severe. This is particularly likely in first offenses, when the amount of money involved is fairly small. Minor punishments for tax evasion normally mean a small fine, on top of an order to pay whatever taxes the taxpayer owes. A minor punishment is most likely when the government has trouble proving that fraud was involved, as opposed to an honest accounting error.
However, if it can be clearly proven that a person or corporation in Capitola, California willfully attempted to harbor income or assets for the purpose of getting out of taxes, a court will probably throw the book at them, so to speak. This can mean jail sentences measured in years, and fines in the six or seven figures.
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A Capitola, California Tax Evasion Lawyer Can Help
An attorney in Capitola, California specializing in tax law can help you adhere with all the tax laws that apply to you, which makes it very unlikely that you'll ever be accused of tax evasion in the first place.
If the government truly charges you with tax evasion, it cannot be stressed enough that you need the assistance of a reliable Capitola, California tax attorney. Assuming you're actually innocent, your tax lawyer can help you prepare a defense, and ensure that you have a good chance of being found not guilty. On top of that, they can make getting through such a difficult time much easier.