Justice Department Seeks to Shut Down Texas Tax Preparer
(STL.News) The United States filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas today to bar a Houston area tax return preparer from preparing federal income tax returns for others.
The suit was brought against Jonathan Perry, individually and doing business as X-Pert Tax Services and as JONATHAN PERRY. The complaint alleges that during 2017-2022, over 4,000 federal income tax returns were filed with the IRS using electronic filing identification numbers that the IRS issued to Perry.
According to the complaint, in a substantial number of these tax returns, the defendants significantly overstated the customers’ tax refunds by fabricating employee business expenses, household help income, business losses and/or by falsely claiming education credits and fuel excise tax credits to which the customers were not entitled.
By repeatedly understating his customers’ tax liabilities, the complaint alleges, Perry and his tax preparation businesses cost the United States more than an estimated $4.4 million in tax revenue from 2017 to 2022.
Deputy Assistant Attorney General David A. Hubbert of the Justice Department’s Tax Division made the announcement.
Return preparer fraud is one of the IRS’ Dirty Dozen Tax Scams and taxpayers seeking a return preparer should remain vigilant. (More information can also be found here.) The IRS has information on its website for choosing a tax preparer, has launched a free directory of federal tax preparers, and offers information on how to avoid “ghost” tax preparers, whose refusal to sign a return should be a red flag to taxpayers. The IRS also has a checklist of things to remember when filing income tax returns in 2022.
In addition, IRS Free File, a public-private partnership, offers free online tax preparation and filing options on IRS partner websites for individuals whose adjusted gross income is under $73,000. For individuals whose income is over that threshold, IRS Free File offers electronical federal tax forms that can be filled out and filed online for free. The IRS has tips on how seniors and individuals with low to moderate income can get other help or guidance on tax return preparation, too.
In the past decade, the Tax Division has obtained injunctions against hundreds of unscrupulous tax preparers. Information about these cases is available on the Justice Department’s website. An alphabetical listing of persons enjoined from preparing returns and promoting tax schemes can be found this page. If you believe that one of the enjoined persons or businesses may be violating an injunction, please contact the Tax Division with details.
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