This program encourages taxpayers who haven’t paid their taxes to come forward voluntarily and pay what they owe. We offer significant incentives to taxpayers who “fess up” and pay: we won’t impose penalties and we won’t bring criminal charges against them.
The program covers all taxes administered by the Tax Department – including income, corporate, and sales. Any taxpayer who meets the eligibility criteria can participate, even if their nonpayment was the result of fraudulent or criminal conduct.
To participate, a taxpayer need only tell us about the taxes that they owe, enter an agreement to pay what they owe, and continue to pay their taxes in the future.
Although we’re asking taxpayers to tell us about conduct that could be fraudulent or criminal, the Tax Law has privacy provisions that protect them. We can’t use information provided in a voluntary disclosure application against a taxpayer or share that information with other federal, state, or local agencies. However, we can exchange actual returns or reports filed by voluntary disclosure program participants with the IRS and state and local agencies that we have exchange agreements with (as we do with returns and reports filed by all taxpayers).
•There’s an important exception to this secrecy rule: if a taxpayer intentionally violates the terms of the voluntary disclosure agreement, we may use the disclosed information against them.
To be eligible, an applicant must meet all of the following criteria:
•They must not be currently under audit by the Tax Department.
•They must not have received a bill for the past due taxes that they are disclosing.
•They must not be under criminal investigation by a New York State agency or political subdivision of the state.
•They must not be seeking to disclose participation in a tax avoidance transaction (commonly known as a tax shelter) that is a federal or New York State reportable or listed transaction.