The IRS Whistleblower Office is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. The office was created under the Tax Relief and Health Care Act of 2006 to oversee the IRS Whistleblower Program. The Whistleblower Program assists the IRS with ensuring enforcement of IRS regulations and taxpayer compliance.
What is a Whistleblower?
“Whistleblower” is a generic term describing anyone who reports misconduct by an employer, co-worker or another party. There are an abundance of federal laws with provisions covering whistleblowers, including:
- Occupational Safety and Health Act
- Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act
- International Safe Container Act
- Clean Air Act
- Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act
- Federal Water Pollution Control Act
- Safe Drinking Water Act
- Solid Waste Disposal Act
- Toxic Substances Control Act
- Energy Reorganization Act
- Pipeline Safety Improvement Act
- Federal Railroad Safety Act
- National Transit Systems Security Act
- Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act
- Affordable Care Act
The IRS Whistleblower Program offers monetary rewards to people providing credible information about anyone who has been untruthful or deceptive on their tax returns and tax payments.
Know When to Whistleblow!
If you hear your boss, neighbor, or family member boast about underpaying taxes, you may feel the need to file a claim with the IRS Whistleblower Office. Before you do, take some time to consult with a tax advisor to be sure you are providing accurate, full information to the IRS. Your tax advisor can help you file a whistleblower claim, which includes a written narrative with a description of the amounts the individual owes and supporting documentation. You could provide to the IRS the location of a person’s assets, or copies of books, records, ledger sheets, receipts, bank records, contracts, and emails. The IRS also needs to know how and when you learned the information on which you base the claim, as well as your relationship to the person against whom you are filing a claim.
As always, Torri’s Legal Services suggests you seek legal advice before pursuing any sort of whistleblowing claim against another person. Only a trained lawyer will be able to tell you your rights and how best to protect yourself in a whistleblowing situation.