Supreme Court Refuses to Review the Latest Tax Shelter Cases

by Bruce Givner on July 11, 2012

The Supreme Court has refused to consider whether individuals, suspected of intentionally evading U.S. taxes, are constitutionally protected from having to hand over their offshore bank account records.

In 2009, Swiss bank UBS AG (UBS) admitted to helping wealthy U.S. residents hide their assets by opening offshore bank accounts.  To avoid prosecution, UBS paid a fine of almost $800 million.  UBS also released the names of more than 4 thousand of its U.S. customers whose bank records were then subpoenaed by the Department of Justice.
While trial courts in Illinois and Texas have held that UBS customers do not have to turn over their bank records, a federal trial court in California held M.H. in contempt after he refused to comply with the subpoena.

The Department of Justice is appealing the Illinois and Texas rulings.

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