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Maryland Tax Crimes

Individuals can be, and are, charged criminally by the federal government for tax offenses. Convictions can result in substantial jail time, hefty fines, and a court order to pay unpaid taxes to the United States Treasury. In addition, the state of Maryland also can, and does, prosecute individuals for tax crimes.

Criminal Failure to File

  • Failure to file state income tax returns
  • Failure to file required sale and use tax returns
  • Failure to file income tax withholding returns

Income Tax Fraud

Imagine you own and operate a liquor store in your neighborhood.  You report the business as a sole proprietorship on your individual income tax return.  Many customers pay using credit cards; however, some pay with cash.  In order to reduce your gross receipts and the taxes due, you fail to deposit all of the cash in your business bank account and you fail to tell your tax return preparer about it.  This could result in consequences you never considered.  In addition to potential federal charges, the failure to report all of the cash receipts of your liquor business could result in you being investigated and charged with:

  • Filing false state income tax returns
  • Filing false sales and use tax returns
  • Evasion of sales and use tax
  • Perjury

Other sales and use tax offenses in Maryland include:

  • Evasion of sales and use tax
  • Filing false sales and use tax returns
  • Failure to file required sale and use tax returns
  • Failure to collect or pay over sale and use tax
  • Failure to maintain sales and use tax records

Tax Return Preparer Offenses

You operate an income tax return preparation business.  Your client wants to report that he has a side business, in addition to his primary occupation, which generates income that is greatly exceeded by the expenses he claims to have incurred.  The client admits that the business does not exist and he is trying to inflate his tax refund.  If you prepare and file the return despite knowing it contains false information, you could potentially face the following Maryland criminal charges, in addition to federal charges:

  • Preparing a false return
  • Assisting in the preparation of a false return
  • Causing a false return to be prepared
  • Causing false claims for tax refunds to be made

Employment Tax Offenses

Suppose you run a construction business.  While your business has been improving, you find it difficult to pay employer withholding taxes and other day-to-day operational expenses.  Therefore, you pay some employees in cash and you simply omit others from your payroll records.  On top of potential federal charges, you could face state criminal charges for:

  • Failure to file Maryland income tax withholding returns
  • Failure to withhold Maryland income tax
  • Failure to pay the withheld taxes over to Maryland

For more information or to make an appointment, call Brian Crepeau at 410.649.4981 or email bcrepeau@rosenbergmartin.com.

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