Depending on the degree of economic hardship that one is faced with, one may be eligible for adjustment to payments on back taxes, deferment of collection action, or leniency in regards to the default status of payment agreements.
Now, what are taxes? Well, according to Brittannica “taxation, imposition of compulsory levies on individuals or entities by governments. Taxes are levied in almost every country of the world, primarily to raise revenue for government expenditures, although they serve other purposes as well.”
Another interesting fact about taxes is that the National Income Tax rates in the United States are significantly lower than the prevailing rates in other OECD countries. In 2014, the different levels of direct tax obligations ranged from 10% to 39.6%, with intermediate rates of 15%, 25%, 28%, 33% and 35%.
Also, it is important to highlight that the bulk of the financing of social spending comes from the richest 20%, while the fourth income quintile remains in a position close to the balance between its average fiscal contribution and the monetary value of transfers and benefits received.
Francisco D’Agostino is the founder and president of Agostino & Associates, P.C. Prior to entering private practice, Mr. Agostino was an attorney with the Internal Revenue Service’s District Counsel in Springfield, Illinois and Newark, New Jersey. He also worked as a Special Assistant United States Attorney, where he prosecuted primarily criminal tax cases. As an adjunct professor, Mr. Agostino taught tax controversy at Seton Hall University W. Paul Stillman School of Business and Rutgers School of Law. He also served as the co-director of the Rutgers Federal Tax Law Clinic.
Mr. D’Agostino is also a frequent speaker and author on tax controversy and litigation matters. He serves on the Advisory Board of the Journal of Tax Practice and Procedure. Mr. Agostino is actively involved with the American Bar Association and the New York County Lawyers’ Association.
Francisco D’Agostino specializes in civil and white-collar criminal litigation, tax controversies and tax planning.
Mr. D’Agostino is also the President of Taxpayers Assistance Corp., which provides tax and legal advice to low-income taxpayers in the NY/NJ area.
Some of his recent publications are: Tax Practitioner’s Guide to Identity Theft (CCH Inc., 2017, ISBN 978-0-8080-4556-4, Recent Developments in FATCA Compliance, 93 Taxes 51 (July 2015), A 21st-Century Approach to Litigating Valuation Issues, 17 J. Tax Prac. & Proc. 47 (Apr.-May 2015), Reviving Disallowed Charitable Conservation Easement Deductions, 146 Tax Notes 449 (Apr. 27, 2015) and Be Prepared: The IRS’s Duty to Foster Voluntary Compliance Through Code Secs. 6014(a) and 6020(a), 17 J. Tax Prac. & Proc. 5 (Feb.-Mar. 2014)
Frank is a licensed CPA and attorney who operated as a solo practitioner for more than twenty years before taking a position of counsel with the firm of which his brother is a named shareholder. Frank concentrates on the small business client helping them weave the tangled web of complex government regulations, drafting and negotiating contracts, and business succession planning. He assists tax clients with tax preparation, audit representation, and collection matters. He has extensive courtroom experience in enforcing contracts and collections. He has compassion for his clients appearing frequently before immigration courts to argue for families to remain united legally. Frank is active in the community having served as Treasurer for the South Bend Symphony, Treasurer of the Italian-American Heritage Society, Deputy County Attorney for the St. Joseph County Assessor, and as an Adjunct Professor of Accounting at both the University of Notre Dame and St. Mary’s College.
United States Tax and the Accidental Americans, by Francisco D’Agostino, Esq. and JaeYoung Song, J.D.
Many tax professionals receive calls from offshore taxpayers identifying themselves as “Accidental Americans.” These taxpayers ask whether they must reply to correspondence from the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”), comply with the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (“FATCA”), or pay income taxes to the United States (“U.S.”). This article discusses the tax obligations “Accidental Americans” face and options available to address their status as U.S. taxpayers.
D’Agostino can help you with that and more. Also, the Free Exercise Clause of the United States (“U.S.”) Constitution (“Free Exercise Clause”) protects the exercise of religion. The Religious Freedom Restoration Act (“RFRA”)4 strengthens this protection. Subject to exceptions discussed below, RFRA prohibits the federal government, including the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”), from substantially burdening a person’s exercise of religion. This article reviews RFRA and the RFRA issues arising in IRS examinations.
In case you didn’t know, evading the payment of taxes is a crime under the Internal Revenue Code (“IRC”). However, with increasing frequency, prospective clients with tax debt resist their tax professional’s advice to pay their delinquent taxes. Instead, these taxpayers direct their professionals to TV commercials where tax resolution firms claim they can settle tax debts for “pennies on the dollar.” Taxpayers base their rejection of their reference that they make good faith efforts to pay back taxes on the almost daily infomercials promising tax forgiveness under the Internal Revenue Service’s (“IRS”) Fresh Start Program.
Now, why is it important to pay taxes?
Well, at a worldwide level one of the most frequently used mechanisms to support nations is taxes, a process that has been modernized since the Middle Ages when it originally emerged.
These contributions, the result of the income received by citizens and companies, as well as other income, contribute to the growth and development of the countries.
Taxes represent an important source of income for the national government, since they are subsequently reinvested in education, health, implementation of justice and security, as well as other fundamental issues for the country.
The action of paying taxes exists from the moment that humanity organized itself into complex societies and those who govern or make decisions for everyone else began to demand the payment of taxes or tributes.
Francisco D’Agostino explains that taxes are contributions that must be made by people and companies required by law, so that the state has sufficient resources to provide the public goods and services that citizens need. Taxes are important because the state can obtain the resources to provide education, health, security, justice, public works, combating poverty and promoting economic sectors that are fundamental for the growth of the country’s economy.