Illinois Gas Station Sales Tax Audit
By: Mansoor Ansari Attorney at Law
A quote from the Office of the Attorney General: “An ongoing investigation launched by the Attorney General’s Office and Department of Revenue’s Criminal Investigations Bureau in November 2009 has resulted in $67 million dollars recovered by prosecutors since they targeted gas-station offenders beginning in late 2009.”
As an owner of a gas station in the Chicago-land area, you are most likely consumed with running your business at a profit versus keeping in track of the sales tax that you remit on a monthly basis. Of course, you are trying to make sure that your employees get paid, you are trying to maintain your costly business permits, and trying to take something back home to the wife and kids. The Illinois Department of Revenue heavily scrutinizes gas station owners for underpayment of sales tax related to Sales and Use Tax on Qualified Motor Fuel and Diesel Motor Fuel. Collecting sales tax and remitting a lower amount to the State is tax fraud.
Amendment 2 to House Bill 5289 proposes a new offense of Sales Tax Evasion to prosecute serious offenders who evade paying Illinois sales tax. Designed to pursue those who knowingly and willfully take action to conceal, misrepresent, falsify or manipulate sales-tax returns or practices that under-report and reduce their tax revenue collections documents or payments.
The new Sales Tax Evasion offense increases the ability to find and pursue sales-tax offenders and increases punishment and fine levels. It also extends the statute of limitations from 3 years to 5 to match other evasion statutes for income taxes and motor fuel taxes.
Mansoor Ansari J.D., LL.M. (Tax)
Sales Tax Attorneys Chicago / Sales tax fraud