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October 2015 Archives

Multiple Corporate Giants Under Fire for Tax Anomalies

If you're online, you may be one of more than 1.39 billion people whose first website to check is Facebook. You may have the app downloaded on your phone or tablet, or you might have your phone set to notify you with any "likes", comments, or messages. With so many Facebook users, it's easy to understand why the social media giant made over $2.9 billion in 2014. It's more difficult to understand why they only paid a little under $7,000 for their UK corporation tax bill.


First, generally attorneys charge two different types of fees depending on whether your divorce is agreed or contested. This is because an agreed divorce is shorter, simpler, and takes less time. Normally these agreed divorces are done on a one-time flat fee basis. On the other hand, a contested case is normally billed out at an hourly rate against an upfront retainer that is more than an agreed divorce flat fee. Many times, if you pay for an agreed divorce (that flat fee) and for whatever reason (which will be listed below) your divorce ends up not being agreed, you then have to additionally pay a contested retainer. So, it is fairly important to have a good idea as to which one it will be. Also, many times that flat fee "agree divorce" fee is only available when there is one attorney involved. Generally that one attorney only represents one spouse and the other spouse is willing to go unrepresented. If both spouses retain counsel, normally an hourly retainer is required even if nothing has been filed with the court or the parties intend to settle, because having two lawyers involved generally necessitates at least some negotiation - whereas the idea of a flat fee agreed divorce is that the spouses have already negotiated with each other or will do so independently from the lawyer. 

Does Tax Negligence Count as Tax Fraud?

After submitting their taxes to the IRS, many citizens breathe a sigh of relief that their taxes are done for another year.  In some cases, those same people are gulping in despair when they open their mailboxes a few weeks or months later and find a letter from the IRS notifying them that there were discrepancies in their taxes that needed to be examined.  Taxpayers may find that those discrepancies were their own mistakes, which results in worries about whether or not they are destined for an audit.  With most publicized cases of IRS audits resulting in legal ramifications for the parties involved, citizens take their cues from what they've seen and ready themselves for any of the many penalties that they could face. It's important that taxpayers understand the difference between tax fraud and tax negligence, especially because we know just how much an attorney can charge.  While some clients may indeed be actively committing tax fraud, other clients simply neglected to properly proofread their tax information and fix the mistakes they may have made on their taxes.  So what's the difference, and what can it cost you?

Burning Man not amused by Quizno's Commercial

Burning Man is known to many as an event enjoyed by peaceful hippies. However, after a commercial aired by the sandwich business Quizno's, Burning Man's legal team is stepping out of their peace zone with the threat of a lawsuit. The commercial, aired shortly after this year's Burning Man, shows characters from a sci-fi film called "Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials" being sent to Burning Man as though it were one of the trials. While Burning Man doesn't mind being made fun of, it refuses to make peace with alleged theft of intellectual property. 

Belize Banks Targeted in U.S. Tax Evasion Search

The Central American country Belize is the new target for United States officials in their search for tax evading American citizens. Many Americans utilize off-shore banks to hide their income and assets from the U.S. government, and banks such as Belize Bank International Limited and Belize Bank Limited are among the main targets of the search. 

Hypnosis: A Party Trick Becomes a Crime

Many people have been hypnotized as part of a show or party trick. Others claim that hypnosis has aided them in sleeping, dieting, and even stopping smoking. Some people don't trust hypnosis and may not have a clear idea of what it is. No matter your personal stance on it, the modern understanding is that hypnotism is real, but isn't a form of ultra mind control that television and films make it seem.

Gatlingburg, Tennessee Man Sentenced to 393 Months for Child Pornography

According to a release from the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Tennessee, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Knoxville Police Department's Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (KPD-ICAC) became aware of the existence of child pornography in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. After an undercover investigator received more information on the suspect and the source, the officials used a public router for surveillance to pinpoint the suspect's whereabouts. The suspect, Johnny Ray Sammons, was located at a local fast food restaurant in Gatlinburg, TN. 

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Mr. McKellar was voted by his peers as a “Top Attorney” by Knoxville’s CityView Magazine in its 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017 editions. In 2014, 2015, and 2016, Mr. McKellar was selected as a member of the “Top 100 Trial Lawyers” by the National Trial Lawyers.

Ms. Easter was voted by her peers as a “Top Attorney” in Cityview Magazine for Family Law / Divorce / Child Support in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017.

Mr. Devore was voted by his peers as a "Top Attorney" by Knoxville’s CityView Magazine for Social Security Disability in 2017. "

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