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Fighting Tax Fraud Allegations in South Carolina

Columbia, South Carolina Tax Fraud Lawyers

An investigation or arrest for tax fraud is a serious crime.  A conviction for tax fraud can result in  jail time as well as possible fines.

Common tax fraud allegations include:

  • failure to pay taxes
  • submitting false information
  • directing another to submit false information

Do NOT Talk to SC Department of Revenue Investigators

Our clients often tell us that they speak to investigators because they feel that they do not have anything at all to hide. If you are approached by an investigator, contact a criminal defense attorney to discuss the best way to proceed. Don’t be fooled into thinking that it is ok to talk to the investigator.  While your intentions may be good, your words can get twisted resulting in your arrest and additional charges.

SECTION 12-54-44. Criminal penalties applicable to every tax or revenue law requiring return or statement filing with department.

(A) Except as otherwise provided, the criminal penalties imposed by this section apply to every revenue or tax law of the State that provides for the filing with the department of a return or statement of the tax or the amount taxable.

(B)(1) A person who wilfully attempts in any manner to evade or defeat a tax or property assessment imposed by a title administered by the department or the payment of that tax or property assessment, in addition to other penalties provided by law, is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than ten thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than five years, or both, together with the cost of prosecution.

(2) A person required by a provision of law administered by the department and who wilfully fails to collect, truthfully account for, and pay over any tax imposed by a provision of law, in addition to other penalties provided by law, is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than ten thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than five years, or both, together with the cost of prosecution.

(3) A person required under any provision of law administered by the department and who wilfully fails to pay any estimated tax or tax, or who is required by any provision of law or by any regulation and who wilfully fails to make a return, keep records, or supply information, at the time or times required by law or regulation, in addition to other penalties provided by law, is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than ten thousand dollars, or imprisoned not more than one year, or both, together with the cost of prosecution.

(4) A person required by law or regulation to furnish a statement who wilfully furnishes a false or fraudulent statement in the manner, at the time, and showing the information required by law or regulation, is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than one thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than one year, or both.

(5) A person required to supply information to his employer under Chapter 8 of Title 12 who wilfully supplies false or fraudulent information or who wilfully fails to supply information which would require an increase in the tax to be withheld under Chapter 8, Title 12 is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than one thousand dollars, or imprisoned not more than one year, or both. Offenses in this item are triable in magistrate’s court.

(6)(a) A person is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than five hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than five years, or both, together with the cost of prosecution, if he:

(i) wilfully makes and subscribes any return, statement, or other document, which contains or is verified by a written declaration that it is made under the penalties of perjury, and which he does not believe to be true and correct as to every material matter; or

(ii) wilfully assists in, or procures, counsels, or advises the preparation or presentation under, or in connection with a matter arising under those provisions of law administered by the department of a return, affidavit, claim, or other document which is fraudulent or is false as to any material matter, whether or not the falsity or fraud is with the knowledge or consent of the person authorized or required to present the return, affidavit, claim, or document.

(b) A person convicted of a crime described in subitem (a)(ii) is prohibited from preparing or assisting in the preparation of a tax return required to be filed under any title administered by the department. A person violating this prohibition is guilty of a felony, and, upon conviction, must be fined ten thousand dollars and imprisoned for at least five years without probation, parole, or suspension of sentence.

(c) A person who:

(i) willfully removes, deposits, or conceals, or is concerned in removing, depositing, or concealing goods or commodities for which a tax is or must be imposed, or property upon which levying is authorized pursuant to law, with intent to evade or defeat the assessment or collection of any tax imposed by this provision of law administered by the department is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than five thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than three years, or both, together with the cost of prosecution;

(ii) in connection with the preparation of a tax return for another, the filing of a tax return, or the payment of a tax, receives money from the payment of any tax, receives money from the other person with the understanding that it is to be paid over to the department to discharge, in whole or in part, the other person’s tax liability and wilfully fails to pay over the same to the department is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than five thousand dollars or imprisoned for not more than three years, or both, for each offense together with the cost of prosecution; or

(iii) wilfully delivers or discloses to the department any list, return, account, statement, or other document known by him to be fraudulent or to be false as to a material matter, is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not more than five thousand dollars or imprisoned for not more than one year, or both.

(C) Reserved

(D) A machine owner or distributor, as defined in Article 20, Chapter 21 of this title, who allows or causes a machine to be operated without a metering device, or who wilfully places a machine on location or who wilfully allows or causes a machine to be operated with a metering device that does not accurately record the information required under Article 20, Chapter 21 of this title is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction, must be imprisoned for not less than one year nor more than ten years, without benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence, and in addition may be fined not more than twenty-five thousand dollars.

If you or a loved one has been contacted by the IRS; contact our criminal tax fraud defense team at the Strom Law Firm, LLC for a free consultation for the best way to proceed.  We offer flexible payment options and accept Visa and Mastercard.