2005 Federal Sentencing Guidelines
Chapter 2 - PART T - OFFENSES INVOLVING
§2T1.4. Aiding, Assisting,
Procuring, Counseling, or Advising Tax Fraud
(a) Base Offense Level:
(1) Level from §2T4.1 (Tax Table) corresponding to the tax loss; or
(2) 6, if there is no tax loss.
For purposes of this guideline, the "tax loss" is the tax loss, as defined
in §2T1.1, resulting from the defendant’s aid, assistance, procurance
(b) Specific Offense Characteristics
(1) If (A) the defendant committed the offense as part of a pattern or scheme
from which he derived a substantial portion of his income; or (B) the defendant
was in the business of preparing or assisting in the preparation of tax returns,
increase by 2 levels.
(2) If the offense involved sophisticated means, increase by 2 levels.
If the resulting offense level is less than level 12,
increase to level 12.
Statutory Provision: 26 U.S.C. § 7206(2)
(other than a violation based upon 26 U.S.C. § 6050I).
1. For the general principles underlying the determination of tax loss, see §2T1.1(c)
and Application Note 1 of the Commentary to
§2T1.1 (Tax Evasion; Willful Failure to File Return, Supply Information,
or Pay Tax; Fraudulent or False Returns, Statements, or Other Documents). In
certain instances, such as promotion of a tax shelter scheme, the defendant
may advise other persons to violate their tax obligations through filing returns
that find no support in the tax laws. If this type of conduct can be shown
to have resulted in the filing of false returns (regardless of whether the
principals were aware of their falsity), the misstatements in all such returns
will contribute to one aggregate "tax loss."
2. Subsection (b)(1) has two prongs. The first prong applies to persons who
derive a substantial portion of their income through the promotion of tax schemes, e.g.,
through promoting fraudulent tax shelters. The second prong applies to persons
who regularly prepare or assist in the preparation of tax returns for profit.
If an enhancement from this subsection applies, do not apply
§3B1.3 (Abuse of Position of Trust or Use of Special Skill).
3. Sophisticated Means.—For
purposes of subsection (b)(2),
"sophisticated means" means especially complex or especially intricate offense
conduct pertaining to the execution or concealment of an offense. Conduct such
as hiding assets or transactions, or both, through the use of fictitious entities,
corporate shells, or offshore financial accounts ordinarily indicates sophisticated
Background: An increased
offense level is specified for those in the business of preparing or assisting
in the preparation of tax returns and those who make a business of promoting
tax fraud because their misconduct poses a greater risk of revenue loss and
is more clearly willful. Other considerations are similar to those in §2T1.1.
Historical Note: Effective
November 1, 1987. Amended effective November 1, 1989 (see Appendix
C, amendments 231 and 303); November 1, 1990 (see Appendix
C, amendment 343); November 1, 1993 (see Appendix
C, amendment 491); November 1, 1998 (see Appendix
C, amendment 577); November 1, 2001 (see Appendix
C, amendment 617).