Dispute between IRS and south Georgia CPA escalates to court - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Dispute between IRS and south Georgia CPA escalates to court

January 16, 2007

Albany-  A dispute between an Albany Accountant and the IRS has escalated to the courts. 

The government wants CPA Carlysle Sullivan barred from preparing anyone's tax returns. The IRS claims Sullivan participated in an off-shore tax shelter that allowed clients to avoid paying most of their income taxes. Sullivan says, he thought Administrative Services, Ltd. was legal. He also says, he amended the returns in question and he doesn't know why the government is still after him.

Carlysle Sullivan's Washington D.C. attorney says Sullivan never worked directly for Administrative Services Ltd. in fact he was an investor. Administrative Services Ltd. simply recommended clients use Sullivan to prepare their returns. He claims Sullivan never realized he was doing anything wrong and when the IRS confronted him on the incorrect returns, amended returns were filed.

Certified Public Accountant Carlysle Sullivan was stunned to learn his dispute with the IRS had escalated to the recent complaint filed.

"No, I didn't know anything. I didn't realize that, that shocks me," said CPA Carlysle Sullivan Jr.

Sullivan was first approached by the IRS in 2003. They questioned him on returns filed by clients who invested in an organization named Administrative Services Ltd.

"Administrative Services referred people who needed tax returns filed to Mr. Sullivan," said Attorney Alvin Brown, tax attorney for Sullivan.

The IRS claims many clients didn't fill out the proper forms, paid minimal taxes on the income invested, and that Sullivan used created signature stamps of purported trustee signatures on trust returns he prepared.

"This is all wrong and he's trying to straighten it all out," said Sullivan.

Sullivan's tax attorney claims, Sullivan has been working with the IRS to straighten out the dispute, once the problem was brought to his attention, clients returns were amended and new returns were filed and paid.

Administrative Services Ltd. has since gone out of business.

"He was told that income that was deferred off-shore in these foreign trusts that, that income should be brought back into income and that those trusts were no good," said Brown.

The Department of Justice is asking Sullivan to provide them with a list identifying clients that he prepared or help prepare any tax related documents for since 1997. The U.S. Attorney's office wouldn't comment further on the case because it remains open.

The court has not granted the request for an injunction and Sullivan is still in business. Brown said cases like this are not unusual.

Feedback: news@walb.com?subject=SullivanVsIRS