Yes, the failure to pay payroll taxes to the IRS may be considered a crime both in Oklahoma and around the nation, in some circumstances. If you are accused of failure to pay payroll taxes, be aware that it is a federal crime and not one specific to the state of Oklahoma. Thus, your case would be tried in the federal courts and carry the potential consequences of a federal felony.
The IRS takes all cases of failure to pay payroll taxes seriously. Payroll taxes are often referred to as trust fund taxes since business owners are holding the money and paying the IRS on behalf of their employees. Thus, the failure to pay payroll taxes is often likened to theft.
However, not all cases of failure to pay payroll taxes become federal criminal cases. In most cases, the IRS tries to resolve the matter internally or in a civil action. A business may face significant financial penalties in these cases, but individuals will not face jail time.
In some cases, however, the IRS does pursue a criminal case against a business owner for failing to pay payroll taxes. Generally, the IRS pursues a criminal case if it believes that you willfully withheld the money and did not simply make a mistake.
For more information about what could happen to you if you owe back payroll taxes to the IRS, please contact an experienced payroll tax lawyer in Oklahoma County today. Our lawyers welcome your call at 800-721-7054, and we encourage you to read a FREE copy of our book, The Ultimate Survival Guide for IRS Problems, to learn more.