Former IRS Attorneys
We Exclusively Represent Tax Whistleblowers
We get it. Having submitted hundreds of whistleblower claims to the IRS under the IRS Whistleblower Program, we are keenly aware of your concerns about IRS whistleblower protection. Repeatedly, the first question posed by a Tax Whistleblower is: “Can I report tax fraud anonymously?” or “Will my confidentiality be protected?”
The answer is Yes! … but with the proper legal representation your identity will remain confidential.
The risk to the Tax Whistleblower ranges from minimal to strong. Most whistleblowers are concerned with at least one of the following: loss of employment, loss of career, loss of professional license, loss of family relationship, fear of bodily harm, etc. Each situation must be examined for associated risk. We will discuss and weigh each potential risk with you.
Who must know your identity?
Second, the Internal Revenue Service must know your identity. IRS Notice 2008-04 states that only an individual may file a tax whistleblower claim. Therefore, it cannot be done by a trust, a corporation, LLC or through a nominee such as a friend, family member, accountant, or even your attorney. In fact, you as the “insider” must sign the Whistleblower Claim form under penalties of perjury.
Third, if you decide to appeal the “determination” by the IRS of your reward, you must appeal to the U.S. Tax Court which must know your identity. The court records are essentially public records. (However, see below as to filing anonymously.)
Tax Whistleblower Attorney
Of course, your attorney representing you before the IRS must know your identity. However, she/he should protect all information that you provide based upon the attorney client privilege and work product doctrine ethical duty of confidentiality. Based upon your concern, our firm will take many additional steps beyond the basics to ensure your confidentiality.
The IRS has implemented necessary procedures, set out in IRM 25.2.2, to protect the identity of the Tax Whistleblower and does everything it can to ensure these procedures are followed. However, the IRS, through IRS Notice 2008-4, stated simply,
The IRS will protect the identity of the claimant to the fullest extent permitted by law. Under some circumstances, such as when the claimant is needed as a witness in a judicial proceeding, it may not be possible to pursue the investigation or examination without revealing the claimant’s identity. The IRS will make every effort to inform the claimant before proceeding in such a case.
The Tax Whistleblower Law Firm will evaluate your claim and, using their experience as former IRS trial attorneys and Tax Whistleblower attorneys, advise you, whether, in their opinion, it is likely that you would be called as a witness.
U.S. Tax Court
Confidentiality is what makes the IRS Whistleblower Program successful. Congress, pursuant to I.R.C. § 7623, gave the IRS Whistleblower the right to appeal the IRS determination of award/reward to the United States Tax Court. Until relatively recently, the tax court had not ruled as to whether the Tax Whistleblower could proceed anonymously in the filing of an appeal. On December 8, 2011, in the case of in Whistleblower 14106-10 v. Commissioner, 137 T.C No. 15 (2011), the U.S. Tax Court ruled that the openness of a public record must be weighed with the protection and safety of the whistleblower in these matters. The Tax Court has established a new Rule (i.e. Tax Court Rule 345) to protect the identity of the IRS Whistleblower,
Rule 345. PRIVACY PROTECTIONS FOR FILINGS IN WHISTLEBLOWER ACTONS (a) Anonymous Petitioner: A petitioner in a whistleblower action may move the Court for permission to proceed anonymously, if appropriate. Unless otherwise permitted by the Court, a petitioner seeking to proceed anonymously pursuant to this Rule shall file with the petition a motion, with or without supporting affidavits or declarations, setting forth a sufficient, fact specific basis for anonymity. The petition and all other filings shall be temporarily sealed pending a ruling by the Court on the motion to proceed anonymously.
As former attorneys of the IRS Office of Chief Counsel, we are confident that we will take steps to protect your identity from inadvertent disclosure. Our law firm utilizes Steps of Protection that will be followed to protect your identity, and we have suggestions of steps for you to follow to protect your identity. With respect to our computers and servers, we employ state-of-the-art software and hardware to protect your data. We have confidence in our abilities, the IRS, and the IRS Whistleblower Program. Call us to learn about IRS Whistleblower protection and reporting tax evasion anonymously in a free consultation at 855-211-7623. We will answer all your questions.