Last year, authorities with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) reportedly closed 10,615 whistleblower claims, marking 27 percent increase in the number of these cases resolved when compared to data from 2014. This is according to the latest IRS Whistleblower Program Report, released earlier this year, which has also revealed that, in 2015:
- A total of 99 awards were granted to whistleblowers who worked with the IRS, resulting in payouts of roughly $103 million.
- While IRS officials closed more whistleblower claims in 2015 (than in 2014), they did reportedly receive about 17 percent fewer new claims in 2015.
- Since the program was initiated in 2007, more than $403 million in whistleblower awards have been paid out by the IRS. Over this same timeframe, authorities have successfully recouped more than $3 billion in tax revenues.
Looking towards the Future: Recommendations for Improving the IRS Whistleblower Program
While the above findings certainly seem promising – both in terms of the IRS’s work to go after tax cheats and to reward those who have the courage to report tax fraud, officials have been reluctant to rest on their laurels.
In fact, in an opposite move, IRS officials have specifically highlighted some of the biggest challenges and obstacles facing its Whistleblower Program, making recommendations in the 2015 Report as to how the program should be improved in the coming years to enhance authorities’ efforts.
Some of the most noteworthy recommendations that have been made included (but were not exclusive to):
- Shortening the duration of the average IRS whistleblower case – In general, these claims last for an average of 6 years.
- Revising or streamlining the “statutory provisions that impede the IRS from communicating effectively and regularly with whistleblowers”
- Enhancing the statutory protections that are available to whistleblowers (to minimize their risk of being the targets of retaliation).
According to officials, addressing these (and other issues) could promote the effectiveness of the IRS Whistleblower Program, ideally allowing it to finally “realize its full potential.”
Contact a Los Angeles Whistleblower Attorneys at Urbanic & Associates
If you are ready to blow the whistle on an employer’s (or another entity’s) illegal and/or fraudulent actions, you can turn to the experienced Los Angeles whistleblower attorneys at Urbanic & Associates for aggressive advocacy and effective representation in your pursuit of justice.
Since 2000, our lawyers have been dedicated, vigorous advocates for our clients, helping them stand up to even the most formidable opponents while working diligently to bring their cases to favorable outcomes.
To discuss your options for getting on the path to justice, call (310) 216-0900 or send our firm an email using the contact form on this page.
From our offices based in Los Angeles, Attorney James Urbanic provides superior representation to clients throughout Los Angeles County and southern California, including (but not limited to) those in Glendale, Burbank, Alhambra, Van Nuys, Santa Monica and Orange County.