In the first year it was established, along with enhanced rewards for tips on large tax underpayments, the IRS Whistleblower Office received about 80 claims, the IRS said in a news release. About half the claims came in the last two-and-a-half months of 2007. They include a claim of $2 billion in December 2007, according to the Washington, D.C., law firm that filed it. The firm, the Ferraro Law Firm, said the claim broke the previous record of $1 billion, which it also submitted two months earlier.
Also in December, the Whistleblower Office’s first anniversary, the IRS provided interim guidance on claims and their filing in Notice 2008-4. Effective Dec. 20, 2006, the Tax Relief and Health Care Act of 2006 set rewards at between 15% and 30% (the previous maximum was 15%) of the proceeds collected (now including interest) in an action to which the tipster’s information substantially contributed. The amount of tax in dispute must exceed $2 million, and if the taxpayer is an individual, that person’s gross income for any taxable year in question must exceed $200,000.