How To Avoid Tax Scams If You Own a Dental Practice, Law Firm or Physician Office
Business owners are subject to many frauds and scams. It always helps to be forewarned so that you can avert such tricksters. Scams are dishonest schemes that misrepresent the truth, inducing you to act to your own detriment. Here are some of the tax scams that businesses must avoid.
- The “shelf corporation” corporate credit.
I have numerous clients who have question what to do with a “shelf corporation” for which they paid $5,000 to $15,000. They were sold some flashy terms, unsecured credit and ideas to win larger loans using the name of the shelf corporation. The fact is that building corporate credit cannot be done in a few minutes. On the contrary, it takes lot of time – no short-cut process works.
- The “I have a deal” scam.
This is referred to as “affinity fraud.” A relative or a friend informs someone in church or the neighborhood that they have acquired a “great new business” worth investing in. The fact is that investing in any start-up may appear to be a great idea, but it may be risky, especially if it makes big claims or promises. Make sure the claims are realistic as suing to recover losses may be costly.
- The non-licensed business tax adviser or coach.
A “Coach” is someone who did not finish school and earn a degree. “Coaches” attempt to give legal and tax advice which they are not licensed to give. Watch out for these scam artists. There are plethora of operations that demand that you pay money and have you talk to someone who has no business experience. Always ask for credentials, perform due diligence and acquire an opinion on legal and tax matters from a licensed, trusted adviser.
- Filing fee bill.
After you register a LLC or corporation in your state, you might suddenly receive a piece of mail telling you owe another fee. Getting mail informing you that a filing fee is required is a scam-do not pay it. Be sure not to ignore any official notice, but certainly get a second opinion if you receive a filing fee bill.
- Business Identity Theft.
Not taking cautionary steps may result in hours of hard work trying to clear your name and re-establish your identity. Shred all discarded paper bearing your business name and protect your business data. Be careful and respond to email by verifying the account. Avoid giving information over the phone.
Why Choose Geraldine A. Clahar, CPA Firm
Geraldine A. Clahar, CPA, has over 30 years’ experience as a professional accountant. Her background includes work in both public accounting, (with three years at KPMG’s New York office), and private accounting in the healthcare industry. She holds a BBA in accounting from CUNY Baruch College and an MBA in Taxation from St. Johns University. Her firm, G.A. Clahar, CPA serves small- to-medium-sized businesses as well as individuals, servicing all of their accounting, bookkeeping, tax, and financial planning needs.
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