When It Comes to Tax Sites, Be Careful Where You Click


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8-16-11

Ever get the feeling that someone is watching over your shoulder? Well, chances are the IRS hasn’t wire-tapped your phone or installed little spy cameras in your office. But you could be doing something very innocently that could cause you a lot of trouble down the road.

I’m talking about innocently signing up to get a free eBook, attending a webinar or teleseminar, going to a live event or even logging in to post a comment or question on a site that promotes tax strategies that are shaky at best. You know the type of sites I’m talking about. These are the guys who say that you don’t really have to pay taxes and have all kinds of ‘sounds too good to be true’ arguments to make.

The thing is these arguments really don’t work. And eventually the IRS shuts the promoters down. Recently, the promoters have been able to negotiate lesser sentences and fines if they voluntarily turn over the list of everybody who signed up to receive the information.

Unless there is attorney client privilege or CPA privilege attached to the tax information, your sign-in information and any other info collected (name, address, phone number) is subject to subpoena. For that matter, anyone who wanted to sue you could get your information by subpoena.

Here are two quick tips to reduce your risk:

  1. Don’t provide any information to sites that don’t look legal. If someone has the super secret, no one can talk about it, way to pay no taxes, just move on.
  2. Don’t provide any information to sites that purport to give you tax information but do not have a CPA or attorney affiliated with them.

Here’s a list of my tax-related sites:

I do have other sites relating more to business structures and business strategies that I haven’t listed here. I just wanted to assure that you’re safe to check in at the above sites for tax information.



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