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May 14, 2013

Senior U.S. tax officials knew of extra Tea Party scrutiny

WASHINGTON, May 13 (Reuters) – Higher-level U.S. Internal
Revenue Service officials took part in discussions as far back
as August 2011 about targeting by lower-level tax agents of “Tea
Party” and other conservative groups, according to documents
reviewed by Reuters on Monday.

The documents show the offices of the IRS’s chief counsel
and deputy commissioner for services and enforcement
communicated about the targeting with lower-level officials on
Aug. 4, 2011, and March 8, 2012, respectively.

May 14, 2013

Senior U.S. tax officials knew of extra Tea Party scrutiny -documents

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Higher-level U.S. Internal Revenue Service officials took part in discussions as far back as August 2011 about targeting by lower-level tax agents of “Tea Party” and other conservative groups, according to documents reviewed by Reuters on Monday.

The documents show the offices of the IRS’s chief counsel and deputy commissioner for services and enforcement communicated about the targeting with lower-level officials on August 4, 2011, and March 8, 2012, respectively.

May 13, 2013

IRS kept shifting targets in tax-exempt groups scrutiny: report

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – When tax agents started singling out non-profit groups for extra scrutiny in 2010, they looked at first only for key words such as ‘Tea Party,’ but later they focused on criticisms by groups of “how the country is being run,” according to investigative findings reviewed by Reuters on Sunday.

Over two years, IRS field office agents repeatedly changed their criteria while sifting through thousands of applications from groups seeking tax-exempt status to select ones for possible closer examination, the findings showed.

May 13, 2013

IRS kept shifting targets in U.S. tax-exempt groups scrutiny -report

WASHINGTON, May 12 (Reuters) – When U.S. tax agents started
singling out non-profit groups for extra scrutiny in 2010, they
looked at first only for key words such as ‘Tea Party,’ but
later they focused on criticisms by groups of “how the country
is being run,” according to investigative findings reviewed by
Reuters on Sunday.

Over two years, IRS field office agents repeatedly changed
their criteria while sifting through thousands of applications
from groups seeking tax-exempt status to select ones for
possible closer examination, the findings showed.

May 12, 2013

Timeline: Events in U.S. IRS ‘Tea Party’ scrutiny scandal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Internal Revenue Service is under investigation for extra scrutiny it gave to conservative groups that applied for tax-exempt status, a practice that elicited complaints from the groups during the 2012 presidential election campaigns.

Following are some key events in the fast-developing scandal that has embarrassed the agency and poses another potential headache for the Obama administration at a time when Republicans continue to raise questions about the administration’s actions related to the deadly assault on the U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya, last September.

Apr 29, 2013

Tax strategy may be key to Verizon Wireless deal

By Kevin Drawbaugh and Nanette Byrnes

(Reuters) – Verizon Communications Inc’s chances of buying the 45-percent stake in Verizon Wireless owned by the UK’s Vodafone Group Plc will hinge, at least in part, on the quality of tax advice it is getting.

Verizon (VZ.N: Quote, Profile, Research), the No. 2 U.S. telecommunications company, may have found a way to structure a purchase of the stake so that Vodafone (VOD.L: Quote, Profile, Research) can avoid a multi-billion dollar U.S. capital gains tax bill, sources familiar with Verizon’s plans said. The possibility of a huge tax bill has previously been regarded by analysts as a big hurdle to any such deal.

Apr 29, 2013

Analysis: Tax strategy may be key to Verizon Wireless deal

By Kevin Drawbaugh and Nanette Byrnes

(Reuters) – Verizon Communications Inc’s chances of buying the 45-percent stake in Verizon Wireless owned by the UK’s Vodafone Group Plc will hinge, at least in part, on the quality of tax advice it is getting.

Verizon, the No. 2 U.S. telecommunications company, may have found a way to structure a purchase of the stake so that Vodafone can avoid a multi-billion dollar U.S. capital gains tax bill, sources familiar with Verizon’s plans said. The possibility of a huge tax bill has previously been regarded by analysts as a big hurdle to any such deal.

Apr 12, 2013

Obama’s income fell in election year, paid 18.4 percent tax rate

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama paid an effective federal tax rate of 18.4 percent in 2012 and saw income from his best-selling books drop as he ran for re-election, according to his tax returns released by the White House on Friday.

Obama and his wife Michelle had adjusted gross income of $608,611 last year, down from $789,674 in 2011, and paid $112,214 in total taxes, compared to $162,074 in 2011.

Apr 10, 2013

US IRS whistleblower program slammed by tax informants’ attorneys

WASHINGTON, April 10 (Reuters) – The U.S. Internal Revenue
Service is missing a chance to raise a lot more revenue by
turning a cold shoulder to people offering up the inside scoop
on tax dodgers, lawyers who represent such whistleblowers said
on Wednesday.

At a hearing about new rules for the IRS whistleblower
program, officials got an earful of advice from several lawyers
who make money representing informants and who, in turn, want to
make more of it for themselves and their clients.

Apr 10, 2013

Tax informants’ attorneys slam U.S. IRS whistleblower program

WASHINGTON, April 10 (Reuters) – The U.S. Internal Revenue
Service is missing a chance to raise a lot more revenue by
turning a cold shoulder to people offering up the inside scoop
on tax dodgers, lawyers who represent such whistleblowers said
on Wednesday.

At a hearing about new rules for the IRS whistleblower
program, officials got an earful of advice from several lawyers
who make money representing informants and who, in turn, want to
make more of it for themselves and their clients.