Justice Dpt. Moves to Halt Operations of Florida Tax Preparer

The Justice Department has initiated legal action against Julius T. Price and his business, Price’s Accounting Firm Inc., seeking a permanent injunction to prevent them from preparing federal income tax returns for others. This move, announced by Deputy Assistant Attorney General David A. Hubbert of the Tax Division, underscores a serious crackdown on fraudulent tax preparation practices.

Filed in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, the complaint outlines allegations against Price for preparing thousands of tax returns from 2018 to 2023 that purportedly underreported tax liabilities and inflated refunds through various illicit strategies. Price is accused of fabricating businesses to claim nonexistent losses, making false claims for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), and claiming unfounded deductions and credits, including those for tuition, medical expenses, mortgage interest, and charitable donations. These actions, as alleged in the complaint, have led to a substantial loss of federal tax revenue, exceeding $1.5 million.

This case highlights the broader issue of tax preparation fraud, which can have severe implications for taxpayers and the integrity of the tax system. The IRS provides resources to help taxpayers select a reputable tax preparer, including a free directory of federal tax preparers and guidance on the necessary credentials and qualifications.

Over the past decade, the Justice Department’s Tax Division has secured injunctions against hundreds of tax preparers accused of engaging in fraudulent activities. These efforts are part of a larger endeavor to protect taxpayers and ensure the integrity of the tax system. An alphabetical listing of individuals and businesses enjoined from preparing returns and promoting tax schemes is available on the Justice Department’s website. This resource serves as a cautionary tale for taxpayers to vet their tax preparers and diligently remain vigilant against fraud.

For small business owners, the implications of this case are particularly relevant. The reliance on tax preparers for accurate and lawful filing is crucial to their financial health and compliance with tax laws. This incident serves as a reminder of the importance of thoroughly researching and selecting a tax preparer with a solid reputation and the appropriate qualifications. With tax season upon us, small business owners are encouraged to utilize the IRS’s resources to make informed decisions about their tax preparation services, safeguard against potential fraud, and ensure compliance with federal tax obligations.

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This article, “Justice Dpt. Moves to Halt Operations of Florida Tax Preparer” was first published on Small Business Trends