Washington Electrical Contractor Fails to Pay Employment Taxes

March 20, 2015 — The Tax Relief and Health Care Act of 2006 set up an IRS Whistleblower Office so whistleblowers with information about tax fraud could notify the IRS and receive compensation. The Act allows tipsters to receive a percentage of 15 to 30 percent of the funds recouped by the IRS based on an informant’s unique information. To be eligible for compensation concerning a private individual’s IRS violations, the tax evader’s gross income must exceed $200,000 for every taxable year involved and the government’s recovery must top $2 million. To receive a reward for information about a corporation’s wrongdoing, no minimum recovery is required.

Electrical Contractor Withholds $2.6 Million in Federal Payroll Taxes and Spends Money on Cars and Gifts to Family

An electrical contractor in Burbank, Washington has been convicted in federal court for willfully failing to pay federal payroll taxes. After withholding $2.6 million in federal payroll taxes from her employees, Maria Elizabeth Townsend — the primary owner of Townsend Controls Inc. (TCI) — chose not to pay the tax to the IRS.
Most of Townsend’s employees were union members working out of Local 112 of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. Between April 2007 and September 2009, TCI properly withheld employment taxes from the wages of its union and nonunion workers. But rather than paying the taxes as required to the IRS, Townsend decided instead to buy cars and bestow cash gifts upon her family members.
Sentencing in the matter is set for June 4, 2015. Townsend could receive a five-year prison sentence as well as a $250,000 fine on each count of failing to pay employment taxes.

Contact Us to Notify IRS About Employers’ Tax Fraud

While Waters & Kraus is not handling this particular instance of tax fraud, we are representing whistleblowers with knowledge of similar types of tax scams. Before stepping forward, tipsters should understand how the process works. The IRS tax fraud lawyers with Waters & Kraus provide government collaborators with the legal counsel they deserve. Contact us or call our whistleblower attorneys at 800.226.9880 to learn how we can protect your interests. Our qui tam lawyers, like Paul Lawrence in our Washington D.C. area office, are committed to advancing and protecting informants’ interests in whistleblower lawsuits.

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