You are probably aware that lying on your taxes can land you in serious hot water, You may not realize, however, that even unintentionally making mistakes when filing and paying your taxes can lead to considerable trouble. Regrettably, tax errors are easily made. This is particularly true this year, as recent tax law changes have had far-reaching effects on just about everyone filing a tax return.
What kind of trouble could you face if you lie or omit information on your tax return?
You can be subjected to an audit
Most people do not want the Internal Revenue Service taking a second look at their taxes, or even worse, going over them with a fine-tooth comb. This is what can happen, should the IRS decide to audit you. Fortunately, only a relatively small percentage of Americans become the subjects of audits. Lying about income or underreporting income are surefire ways to call unwanted attention to yourself.
You can face civil repercussions
You may also face fines, fees and related penalties for lying on your taxes, although the severity of the penalties assessed against you will depend on how much income you lied about. If you made a simple and minor error, you may luck out and not be fined. Bigger mistakes or omissions, however, result in far more substantial penalties.
You can face criminal penalties
While it occurs infrequently, the IRS may decide to seek criminal prosecution against you if you lie on your taxes. Those criminally charged for tax crimes serve an average of more than three years in federal prison for their crimes.
Lying or omitting information on your tax returns can have serious consequences. If you are unsure about what to do you should consult a professional with knowledge of how the IRS treats your particular tax circumstances.