Beware the dirty dozen tax scams of 2014
Abusive tax structures
This is a generally inclusive category for good reason. These types of tax schemes encompass multiple flow-through entities.
Basically, says the IRS, the tax avoidance involves various business arrangements -- limited liability companies, limited liability partnerships and international business companies are among the most common -- that utilize foreign financial accounts, offshore credit and debit cards and other similar instruments. With these tools, the perpetrators take advantage of multi-layer financial transactions to hide the real ownership of the taxable income or assets.
Such schemes, which rank No. 11 in 2014, are helped by the financial secrecy laws of some foreign jurisdictions and the availability of credit and debit cards issued from offshore financial institutions.
The IRS Criminal Investigation unit targets not only the criminals who set up these elaborate schemes, but also the individuals who knowingly participate in abusive tax schemes.