Tax Evasion Lawyers in Oakland
"Tax Evasion" refers to the crime of knowingly failing to pay one's taxes, as required by California law.
Usually, the strategy employed by tax evaders in Oakland, 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.
It's important not to confuse "tax avoidance" and "tax evasion." They are two different things, but some people mistakenly use them interchangeably. Tax avoidance involves using legal methods, such as tax deductions and exemptions, in a strategic manner, for the purpose of reducing one's tax liability. Tax avoidance is perfectly legal. Tax evasion involves fraud, and a deliberate attempt to avoid meeting one's legal obligations to pay taxes.
Penalties for Tax Evasion in Oakland, California
Under the laws of California, as well as federal law, tax evasion is a very severe criminal offense.
Tax evaders in Oakland can be punished by multi-year prison sentences, as well as six-figure fines. Of course, there is a wide range of punishments available, with the ones just mentioned representing the most severe options available.
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 especially true if the prosecution can't definitively prove that that the defendant's failure to pay taxes was purposeful, as opposed to an honest mistake.
However, if the relevant tax authorities are able to demonstrate that a taxpayer in Oakland, California committed purposeful fraud, in order to evade their legal duty to pay taxes, a tax court is probably going to impose a more severe penalty, which may include jail time, and large financial penalties.
A Oakland, California Tax Evasion Lawyer Can Help
A tax attorney in Oakland, California can ensure that you meet your tax liabilities, which will make an audit, or charge of tax evasion, less likely. Sometimes, it's difficult to determine clearly what one's tax liability is, and a tax attorney can help.
If you find yourself really accused of tax evasion, and are innocent, you should hire a Oakland, California attorney with experience practicing tax law, as soon as possible. Your tax attorney can help you defend yourself against the charges, ensuring that you have a good chance at being acquitted.