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Ask Barbara Your Own Question
Barbara, Enrolled Agent
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 3293
Experience:  18+ years of experience in tax preparation; 25+ years of experience as a real estate/corporate paralegal.
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Im being sued (civil lawsuit) abroad (in Brazil) and the plaintiff

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I'm being sued (civil lawsuit) abroad (in Brazil) and the plaintiff is asking to see my U.S. tax return. The argument they used to ask for my return is that they want a list of my assets in the US and the only way to find this information is looking at my return. They have this wrong idea that they will find a list of my assets in my return because according to Brazilian tax laws, any taxpayer in Brazil have to list their assets in a special section of Brazilian tax returns. However, as we all know, in U.S. returns there is no such a thing of "list of assets". Of course you can find some info regarding assets under the depreciation section, or from rental income properties section. But there is no such a thing as "list of assets" in U.S. tax returns. Therefore, I'd like to get a written statement from a CPA clarifying this information. I just want to have and give the plaintiff in Brazil the right info regarding US tax returns. Here is a sample of the kind of statement I need:
"The IRS does not require any individual to list U.S. assets, including properties, vehicles, and other assets, on U.S. tax returns. That being said, even if an individual had many assets in any state of the U.S., these assets don’t have to be listed on his/hers U.S. tax return. Therefore, a U.S. tax return is not a useful instrument to expose a list of assets own by an individual".

Welcome and thank you for giving me the opportunity to assist you with your tax question.


My advice would be to go into greater detail on the statement, i.e.,


Please be advised that the IRS does not require individuals to list any assets on U.S. tax returns. U.S. tax returns are utilized ONLY to report income from whatever source, i.e., wages, interest, dividends, net proceeds from sales of stock, net rental income, and the like. With that being said, a U.S. tax return does not portray an accurate picture of the assets owned by any one individual. Therefore, I respectfully XXXXX XXXXX a U.S. tax return is not and should not be considered as an accurate listing of assets owned by an individual.


Please review the above and let me know what you think.


Thank you and best regards,


Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks Barb, I just don't want to talk about interest, dividends etc... I prefer to keep it simple so I don't mislead them. Therefore I want to just reply their argument regarding the list of assets, without giving any more complex details. I just want them to understand that their argument is not true and definitely not a strong reason to see my returns. Anyway, would you write me such a statement, like an official one, with your signature, cpa license number and everything? You can send me by email. Thank you so much.

I apologize, but I cannot be the one to sign such a statement for you, per site rules. I am sure any CPA or Enrolled Agent in your area will sign such a statement on your behalf since it is the truth. Perhaps your attorney has a CPA acquaintance who will do so.


Please let me know if I can assist you further.


Thank you.



Barbara and other Tax Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


It's been my pleasure. If you have any other questions in the future, please feel free to put "for bkb1956 or Barb" in the subject line, and I will be happy to assist you.


Good luck in your lawsuit!


Also, thank you for the excellent rating. It is most appreciated.


Best regards,