Tax Evasion in Highland, California
"Tax Evasion" refers to the crime of intentionally failing to pay one's taxes, as required by California law.
Usually, the strategy employed by tax evaders in Highland, 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 intentionally attempting to get out of one's tax liability through unlawful 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 Highland, California
Under federal and state law, including the laws of California, tax evasion is a very egregious crime.
In Highland, tax evasion can result in anything from a comparatively small fine, and a court order to pay any back taxes as well as interest, all the way up to financial penalties in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, as well as jail time.
Most often, tax evasion - if it's a first offense and the tax liability is small - will not be cause for huge fines or imprisonment. This is particularly true if the prosecution can't definitively prove that that the defendant's failure to pay taxes was intentional, as opposed to an honest mistake.
But if the government is able to definitively show that a defendant in Highland, California intentionally engaged in fraud to get out of paying taxes, a tax court is very unlikely to show any leniency, and may well sentence the defendant to prison time.
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A Highland, California Tax Evasion Lawyer Can Help
Attorneys in Highland, California who practice tax law can help you stay in conformity with your tax commitments. This is a good way to confirm that you won't be suspected of tax evasion in the first place.
However, if you're really accused of tax evasion, you will need a Highland, California tax attorney more than ever. If you are, in fact, innocent, a tax attorney can give you the best possible chance of being found not guilty.