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We are an elite criminal defense law firm, that emphasizes providing the best service and professionalism to all clients. We service a curated clientele nationwide – that expect the best from their lawyer. We handle tough criminal defense and legal situations that require deep knowledge, experience, dedication, and excellence in order to win. We have over 50 years of combined experience, handling national and international cases.

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We 100's of 5 star reviews, and have been featured in the media. We are a premier law firm who understands how to win cases.

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Top Rated Attorneys

The Spodek Law Group is one of the most successful law firms in the USA. Our success comes from the fact we are attentive to details, and take a very pragmatic approach to each and every single case. Our clients turn to us for realistic advice – so they can make the appropriate decisions they need to make personally. Our goal is to make sure your case ends in a positive outcome, not only personally – but for your family as well.


NY Foreign Bank Account Report Attorneys

NY FBAR Attorneys

New York based attorneys with Spodek Law Group PC represent US residents in matters involving the Foreign Bank Account Report regulations anywhere in the country. We have represented numerous clients accused by the IRS of failing to file a foreign bank account report.

Many American citizens keep foreign bank accounts for business or personal reasons, often relying on foreign bank secrecy laws (or assuming that they will benefit from those secrecy laws). Those foreign account holders must be aware of some major differences between secrecy of bank records in the United States and other countries.

The main issue is that in the United States bank records are not privileged, not protected, and are open for inspection by the government. There is very little you can do to keep government investigators away from your bank records. Additionally, banks must report some transactions to the government, such as cash deposits of $10,000 or more.

Not Disclosing Secret Swiss Bank (and other countries) Accounts

Many other countries, on the other hand, take bank account privacy much more seriously. One good example, obviously, is Switzerland. The Swiss Banking Code makes it a crime for banks or their employees to divulge secrets entrusted to them by their customers, including bank account information.

It is also a serious crime under the Swiss law to obtain secret bank information or secret business information in order to pass it on to a foreign government or an organization. Bank customers whose privacy rights have been violated by divulging their secret banking and business information may sue for damages in Swiss courts.

In the past, many U.S. taxpayers had used European and other countries enhanced banking privacy laws to avoid tax liability in the United States. In order to avoid clashes between court systems, the U.S. entered into tax treaties with some countries, most importantly with Switzerland. The two principal US-Swiss agreements in this area are the United States-Switzerland Income Tax Convention and the Swiss-United States Treaty on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters.

Even with these treaties, there is no automatic cooperation by the Swiss with the U.S. law enforcement. The Swiss will not assist the American government if the investigation or criminal charges involve tax evasion but they will provide help in cases of tax fraud, the difference being that fraud (as understood by the Swiss) involves more affirmative steps, such as falsifying records.

There are also similar treaties between the United States and some other countries. It is important to understand that any secret banking information obtained by the US government, even in violation of the laws of the country in which the information was obtained will be admissible in the U.S. courts.

What are the penalties for failing to file a Foreign Bank Account Report (FBAR) with the IRS? 

Many Americans who have unreported foreign bank accounts don’t realize that they can be subject to both civil and criminal penalties if they don’t file a Foreign Bank Account Report. The government’s fiscal problems have apparently resulted in aggressive crackdowns by the IRS on unreported foreign bank accounts.

First, let’s talk about the criminal penalties. If you willingly fail to file the foreign bank account report, you could face up to 5 years in prison and pay a fine of up to $250,000. The typical federal criminal charges associated with cases like these are filing false tax returns, conspiracy, and failing to disclose foreign bank accounts. In addition to criminal penalties, there may be heavy civil penalties. For willful violations occurring after October 22, 2004, the maximum civil penalty is either $100,000, or 50 percent of the balance of the account at the time of the violation, whichever is greater.

For example, if the account balance was $2,000,000 at the time of the violation. The maximum penalty could potentially be $1,000,000. However, the seriousness of the penalty is that the IRS can impose it each year the account is not reported. So, in a few years time, you can end up giving everything to the IRS.

Hoping that the IRS won’t find out about your offshore accounts, or won’t prosecute you once they do find out, is a big gamble. A common belief is that the IRS only goes after larger offshore accounts, and will not pursue and prosecute smaller monetary accounts. In actuality, especially in the current fiscal landscape, the IRS may aggressively pursue all types of unreported offshore accounts holders, both civilly and criminally, and if you find yourself the target of an IRS inquiry, having the right legal guidance to help you navigate this process can make an enormous difference on the criminal and financial penalties you may face.

Minimizing the financial penalties a client is facing is always a huge priority, but the first goal we have when dealing with unreported offshore bank accounts is to prevent criminal prosecution. One approach is using the IRS Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program. In this program you pay back taxes and penalties, but you will not be prosecuted. This typically involves paying taxes, interest, and a 20% penalty on previously unreported income, and at the end of the case, you pay 27.5% of the highest account balance over 8 years. This may sound steep, but it is certainly better than paying 150% or more, which is not unheard of in an IRS tax evasion prosecution. So, how can a good defense attorney help you mitigate the damages. In a recent case, we had a client who was targeted by the IRS for not reporting multiple foreign bank accounts. The question really was whether this was a willful failure. We convinced federal prosecutors that the client failed to file the FBAR due to a reasonable cause. This prevented criminal prosecution and allowed us to settle the civil penalties. This is just one example of how this can be resolved.

Criminal Liability of Foreign Banks

Recent prosecutions by the United States DOJ have shown that foreign banks can no longer consider themselves immune from tax fraud prosecution. It has long been the practice of some U.S. citizens (or other persons or entities liable for U.S. taxes) to evade taxes by hiding their funds in a foreign bank account. While these individuals who sought to avoid paying taxes were prosecuted, previously the banks have not been involved in the prosecutions.

However, as of now, the U.S. DOJ has been going after banks who make it their business to shelter American tax avoiders and charging them with conspiracy to commit tax fraud. While jurisdiction may be an issue in such cases, it is not usually an insuperable barrier. A bank does not need to have branches in the U.S.; even just the use of the U.S. banking system is enough to confer jurisdiction and allow the bank to be prosecuted by U.S. authorities.

Another issue that frequently arises in such cases is the extent to which the bank’s employees subject the bank itself to liability.

A foreign bank that helps U.S. citizens evade taxes can face criminal charges in the U.S., potentially resulting in restitution payments to the IRS, astronomical fines, and forfeiture of any profit made by the bank in the course of its activities in assisting in tax evasion.

One of the ways in which some foreign banks may help U.S. citizens evade taxes is by establishing secret accounts for them, the funds and income from which go unreported to the IRS. While many foreign banks have stopped allowing this practice due to pressure by the U.S. government, banks that continue to allow these hidden accounts are now being vigorously prosecuted by U.S. prosecutors.

U.S. prosecutors typically uncover the identity of the banks while investigating and prosecuting U.S. tax evaders. If the tax evaders being prosecuted are based in New York City, then the case against the bank will also be in an NYC federal court, since the bank is being brought in as a conspirator or accomplice to the U.S. citizen’s crime of tax fraud. Even if the bank has no branches in the United States, depending on circumstances, U.S. courts could still have authority to hear a criminal case against that bank. Just because a bank has no branches in the U.S., that does not mean it will be shielded from U.S. prosecution.

Banks become accomplice to crime:

When a bank’s financial advisors help U.S. citizens set up undeclared accounts, and the bank services these accounts, such activity is generally taken as a clear indication that the bank is a knowing accomplice to the tax fraud. Some banks have been known to go further and explicitly promise their U.S. clients that the bank accounts would not be disclosed to U.S. authorities, actually making this promise as part of the banks strategy to gain these clients. When these promises are made by senior management personnel, or other sufficiently high-level employees or officers, this may be enough to subject the bank to liability, and will make it difficult to claim that the tax fraud acts were committed by unauthorized employees and should not subject the bank to criminal liability.

Activities that may subject a foreign bank to U.S. tax fraud liability include

  1. setting up and servicing accounts for U.S. clients using shell corporations in order to conceal their identities from the IRS
  2. accepting false documents in order to support the sham identities
  3. allowing U.S. clients to open and maintain undeclared accounts using code names or numbers so that the actual names of the clients will not appear on the bank documents
  4. taking other steps to conceal that the U.S. client has an account with the bank, including communicating by e-mail and otherwise avoiding sending mail to the client’s U.S. address

Some banks have also channeled the hidden funds back to their clients? U.S. accounts, sending the funds in batches of less than $10,000 to avoid reporting.

In addition to the bank’s criminal liability, the bank’s officers or managers who knowingly participate in the tax fraud may be subject to individual liability; penalties may include time in prison, as well as sizeable fines.

When a financial adviser, employed by the bank, counsels a client to open an undeclared account, will the bank be at fault?

While there is no broad line that clearly marks where the bank’s responsibility begins, there are some factors that will be taken into account when deciding this issue. Courts will inquire how widespread the practice was, who among the bank’s senior employees was aware of the fraudulent conduct, and the extent to which the bank’s practices and policies made it easy for fraud to go undetected and/or unaddressed.

To this end, one of the most important things a bank can do to protect itself from prosecution is to have a sound compliance policy that establishes procedures that guard against fraudulent practices in the bank whether they be official bank policy or attempted fraud by a bank employee.

If your bank deals with U.S. citizens or is otherwise involved in U.S. banking or business, your bank and its senior employees may be vulnerable to prosecution. Consequences may include crippling fines and severe curtailment of your bank’s ability to operate in the United States.

Our experienced tax fraud and banking attorneys can help you review existing policies and assist you in crafting a compliance policy that protects you without hobbling your operations. If your bank is being investigated for or charged with tax fraud in the United States, our New York City defense attorneys will protect your rights and fight for the best possible outcome in your case.


Charle Butler
Charle Butler
I was hesitant to hire the Spodek Law Group. I read reviews and knew they have a great reputation. However, I thought I would spend money and not see or speak to my attorney. From the beginning to end of my case Todd and the entire staff were available and willing to help. We worked towards and end result that was way above my expectation and Todd delivered. I am forever grateful for patience and long days and night spent working on my case. Thanks Todd and the entire team!
Mesonista parsons
Mesonista parsons
My attorney at Spodek was Abigail. She was very knowledgeable and helpful with all my questions and concerns, as well as responsive. Her fees are affordable and Abigail took the time to make sure I understood everything relating to my case. I highly recommend Abigail and will request her services in the future.
debabrata chakraborty
debabrata chakraborty
Todd A Spodek is the experienced and best criminal lawyer at USA. He is very professional and always respond on time. Alex also very cooperative and always help me. They took care me and my problem like family member. I am 100% satisfied for their professional service. My result was unexpected and amazing. They dismissed my case. I am really grateful to them. I will recommend you to go there if you want to solve your problem. I wish all the best for them.
Asata Hendricks
Asata Hendricks
Truly appreciate the work the guys did!. Exceptional team & I know they care about each and everyone of their clients. I am super thankful to be referred to Spodek Law Group and I am grateful Todd & Alex were able to work diligently to achieve an outcome I am pleased with. Despite COVID they stayed on top of things and kept me informed every step of the way. Very thankful.
Mike Moroff
Mike Moroff
I'm very satisfied with the services rendered by Todd, Alex and Mary Lou. I whole heartedly recommend Spodek Law Group . I've worked with and have retained other attorneys in the past with Todd's firm being the cream of the crop for many reasons. A very serious legal matter was resolved after a year's hard work and effort. Todd expertly guided me through the process and was able to navigate and make the good journey bearable as well as successful. Mary Lou initially provided excellent assistance before referring my case to Todd. Alex's support was effective and timely. The customer portal (MyCase) is an invaluable communication tool that also kept track of my case. Various aspects of my case were explained and there were several options provided but I made the final decision of how the case would be handled. The legal fee was reasonable considering the effort and amount of work plus it was a flat fee regardless of the length of time required to conclude my case. Todd made himself available to me and we had many scheduled meetings to go over the progress and to discuss the next steps. I felt more confident after many discussions with him. You will not go wrong choosing Spodek Law Group for legal matters.
Josh Katz
Josh Katz
Being that it was the first time that I was in need of an attorney, I was afraid and hesitant and knew I needed the absolute best. It is beyond understood why Spodek Law Group has a reputation of being the top, if not the best law firm in New York. Alex and Abigail were there every step of the way even at the most unconvenient hours. I could not have asked for more. They are extremely good at what they do and they delivered much much more than just winning my case. A big thank you to Alex and Abigail for all the guidance and counseling and their upmost loyal support that extended far more than just legally. If you need the absolute best than don't hesitate to hire Spodek Law Firm.
I cannot tell you how thankful I am to Todd and Alex for their hard work and dedication to my case. I had never been in any trouble before but I had an unfortunate event occur and in the midst of COVID-19 at that therefore I knew I needed a team that was dedicated to my success. Today- my case has been finalized and I’m walking away with no record and can continue life as a mother and a Grad student worry free. I cannot express enough gratitude for their assistance.
AnnMarie Soliman
AnnMarie Soliman
I received a summons and called Spodek law group for a free consultation. Alex took my call and was very quick and responsive. He was available anytime through multiple platforms and very reassuring when needed. They are extremely organized and thorough. They got my case dismissed! I’m very grateful. Thank you Alex and Todd!



Spodek Law Group have offered me excellent support and advice thru a very difficult time. I feel I've dealt with someone who truly cares and wants the best outcome for you and yours. I'm extremely grateful for all the help Spodek Law Group has offered me. I can't recommend them enough.

~ David Bruce

Spodek Law Group was incredibly professional and has given me the best advice I could wish for. They had been helpful and empathetic to my stressful situation. Would highly recommend Spodek Law Group to anyone I meet.

~ Rowlin Garcia

Best service I ever had. Todd is absolutely class personified. You are in the safest hands with spodek. They have their clients interest in mind.

~ Francis Anim

Spodek Law Group

White Glove Service

We provide superior service, excellent results, at a level superior to other criminal defense law firms. Regardless of where your case is, nationwide, we can help you.

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"Spodek Law Group have offered me excellent support and advice thru a very difficult time. I feel I've dealt with someone who truly cares and wants the best outcome for you and yours. I'm extremely grateful for all the help Spodek Law Group has offered me. I can't recommend them..."

David Bruce

"Spodek Law Group was incredibly professional and has given me the best advice I could wish for. They had been helpful and empathetic to my stressful situation. Would highly recommend Spodek Law Group to anyone I meet."

Rowlin Garcia

"Best service I ever had. Todd is absolutely class personified. You are in the safest hands with spodek. They have their clients interest in mind."

Francis Anim
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