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Federal Crimes: Tax Refund Fraud


Tax refund fraud has recently become a popular offense investigated by agencies of the federal government such as the IRS. Making false, fraudulent or fictitious tax returns carries serious penalties under the federal sentencing guidelines. The Miami criminal defense lawyers at Donet, McMillan & Trontz, P.A. have defended many individuals charged tax fraud and identity theft. Anyone being investigated for or accused of tax refund fraud is best served by speaking to a criminal attorney with experience in defending white collar crimes in federal court. Other offenses that can be charged along with tax refund fraud and identity theft are money laundering and racketeering (RICO).

Tax refund fraud


Typical tax refund fraud cases occur when individuals are able to obtain the personal information of others to file fraudulent returns. Names, dates of birth, and social security numbers are obtained illegally and are typically sold to others who eventually file the fraudulent tax returns. The potential penalties are severe in these types of cases and federal government will prosecute these cases as the victims of identity theft often suffer dire consequences to their credit scores which negatively impacts their ability to obtain loans. Furthermore, victims of tax fraud are unable to timely receive their legitimate tax refunds.

Individuals charged in federal court either by indictment or information face severe penalties under the federal sentencing guidelines. A defendant's guidelines will be determined the amount of losses suffered by the federal government along with the number of victims of the tax refund scheme to defraud. In addition to the guidelines which usually result in several years of incarceration, the feds can also charge an individual with the criminal offense of aggravated identity theft. Aggravated identity theft carries a two year minimum mandatory sentence which will tacked on to the top of the guidelines established calculated for the crime of tax fraud.

Prosecuting Tax Fraud Cases

The IRS typically takes the lead in tax return fraud and identity theft. The FBI also assists in large scale investigations. The IRS has upgraded their hardware and software to assist in screening for fraudulent returns. Additionally, the IRS has hired a few thousand additional workers whose sole purpose is to screen for tax return fraud and identity theft. The attorneys at Donet, McMillan & Trontz, P.A. have successfully defended numerous tax fraud and identity theft cases. Some cases are difficult to defend which requires some clients to enter pleas. A qualified and experienced white collar defense lawyer will limit the exposure to a federal prison sentence by seeking to reduce the amount of loss to the federal government, as well as, limiting the number of victims affected by the fraud.


To speak with an experienced white collar defense lawyer at the criminal defense law firm of DMT about your tax refund fraud or identity theft case or any other matter relating to a federal criminal investigation, please contact us to schedule a free consultation. You can contact our office at (305) 444-0030 or reach us by completing our contact page or by sending an e-mail.
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