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Ethics: IRS Criminal Investigations: Key Lessons for Accountants

  • 06/30/2023
  • 11:30 AM - 1:30 PM
  • Webinar - CPA Crossings



This course provides a concise overview of recent IRS criminal investigations and what practitioners can learn from these cases to help fight economic crime and even avoid personal criminal prosecution. While accountants are numbers people by training (not detectives per se with the exception of forensic accountants), practitioners are increasingly being called upon by governments and economic organizations at all levels to step up and help law enforcement battle financial impropriety.

The stakes are huge. In the United States alone, the OECD estimates that 5% to 10% of the annual budget of the US health care programs, Medicare and Medicaid, is wasted as a result of corruption. Every dollar lost to monetary malfeasance has a crippling effect that ripples through countries, industries, companies, communities and individual lives. Government resources are wasted, public services are compromised, companies are financially destabilized, shareholders are cheated, employers are swindled, charities are undermined and much more.

By increasing their awareness of what and how the IRS investigates and prosecutes, accountants can heighten their “spidey sense” of what doesn’t look right in financial records. This includes honing skills to more readily notice -- and report -- ledger anomalies and irregularities, and even rethink a “silence is always safer” mindset. As technology disrupts and automates many fundamental accounting functions, practitioners can add value by more diligently scanning for “creative accounting” red flags on the frontlines.

Prioritizing transparency and behaving ethically -- the core of the profession -- not only helps society and the economy as a whole, it can help accountants boost their reputation as highly trusted business advisors and even supercharge their bottom line.

Learning Objectives:

  • Heighten awareness of IRS investigative priorities.
  • Review criminal case files across the United States from an accounting perspective.
  • Help practitioners be more mindful of their frontline role to act in the public interest and assist law enforcement to detect corruption and report financial misdeeds.
    Program Content:
                  • Snapshot of IRS Criminal Investigations
                  • General tax fraud
                  • Abusive tax schemes
                  • Refund fraud
                  • Employment tax fraud
                  • Identity theft
                  • Data compromises
                  • Money laundering
                  • Public corruption
                  • Corporate fraud
                  • General frauds
                  • Cyber crimes
                  • Global tax and economic crimes
                  • Narcotics, counter-terrorism and transnational organized crime
                  • How accountants can add value to their operations by aiding law enforcement and fighting economic crime

                                                                Designed for: Practitioners who want to increase their awareness of the United States financial crime landscape, review leading IRS investigative priorities and case files, and explore how to assist law enforcement to detect corruption and report financial misdeeds on the frontlines.

                                                                Level: Overview

                                                                InstructorGarrett Wasny

                                                                Developer: Garrett Wasny

                                                                CPE Credits:  2

                                                                Area of Study: Behavioral Ethics

                                                                Prerequisite: None

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