Louisiana Department of Revenue cracks down on payroll tax evaders Louisiana Department of Revenue cracks down on payroll tax evaders

Louisiana Department of Revenue cracks down on payroll tax evaders
08 Feb 2018

The Louisiana Department of Revenue (LDR) is taking action against three local businesses in a state-wide crackdown on payroll fraud.

According to The News Star, Extreme Cars and Trucks of Monroe, Elliott Roofing Services of Metarie and Antunez Painting of Baton Rouge have been accused of tax evasion by failing to withhold and remit the appropriate payroll taxes from their employees’ earnings.

"We are putting companies who engage in this fraudulent behaviour on notice that they shouldn’t expect get away with it," said secretary of revenue Kimberly Lewis Robinson.

Extreme Cars and Trucks owner Bobby Craighead said the business had been warned about the situation previously, and that some of the back taxes had already been paid. He added arrangements had also been made to pay the remaining outstanding taxes, penalties and interest.

LDR assessed the companies through a new withholding audit programme designed to recover withholding tax resulting from unreported cash payments and employees being misclassified. The programme focuses on labour brokers and the industries that typically employ independent contractors such as construction, personal services, and staffing companies.

For the tax years 2013 to 2015, Elliott Roofing Services was found to owe US$55,227 in tax, penalties and interest, while Antunez Painting owed US$147,065 and Extreme Cars & Trucks US$40,019.

Several other audits are currently in progress and affected employers have agreed to pay the assessed withholding tax liabilities.

In 2017, the GAME ON (Government Against Misclassified Employees Operational Network) Task Force was set up as an interagency network to combat employees being misclassified. Most misclassifications involve employers improperly labelling workers as independent contractors to evade withholding tax and other costs. The employer commonly pays the worker in cash and fails to withhold the Louisiana payroll tax.

Emma Woollacott

Emma Woollacott is a freelance business journalist. Her work has appeared in a wide range of publications, including the Guardian, the Times, Forbes and the BBC.El

The Louisiana Department of Revenue (LDR) is taking action against three local businesses in a state-wide crackdown on payroll fraud.

According to The News Star, Extreme Cars and Trucks of Monroe, Elliott Roofing Services of Metarie and Antunez Painting of Baton Rouge have been accused of tax evasion by failing to withhold and remit the appropriate payroll taxes from their employees’ earnings.

"We are putting companies who engage in this fraudulent behaviour on notice that they shouldn’t expect get away with it," said secretary of revenue Kimberly Lewis Robinson.

Extreme Cars and Trucks owner Bobby Craighead said the business had been warned about the situation previously, and that some of the back taxes had already been paid. He added arrangements had also been made to pay the remaining outstanding taxes, penalties and interest.

LDR assessed the companies through a new withholding audit programme designed to recover withholding tax resulting from unreported cash payments and employees being misclassified. The programme focuses on labour brokers and the industries that typically employ independent contractors such as construction, personal services, and staffing companies.

For the tax years 2013 to 2015, Elliott Roofing Services was found to owe US$55,227 in tax, penalties and interest, while Antunez Painting owed US$147,065 and Extreme Cars & Trucks US$40,019.

Several other audits are currently in progress and affected employers have agreed to pay the assessed withholding tax liabilities.

In 2017, the GAME ON (Government Against Misclassified Employees Operational Network) Task Force was set up as an interagency network to combat employees being misclassified. Most misclassifications involve employers improperly labelling workers as independent contractors to evade withholding tax and other costs. The employer commonly pays the worker in cash and fails to withhold the Louisiana payroll tax.

Emma Woollacott

Emma Woollacott is a freelance business journalist. Her work has appeared in a wide range of publications, including the Guardian, the Times, Forbes and the BBC.El

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