Nicolas Cage vs. Wesley Snipes – Both ran afoul of the IRS – Different approaches Different results

Having had issues with the IRS myself…I can appreciate what’s involved when trying to resolve them.  And, I’m not lost to the fact that the IRS issues with Snipes was different than Cage’s issues.  But, it’s interesting to see how the two dealt with the IRS.

Per an interview with People –

While the government recently placed a tax lien on his real-estate holdings, including an additional $6.7 million from 2008, “over the course of my career I have paid at least $70 million in taxes, unfortunately, due to a recent legal situation, another approximate $14 million is owed to the IRS,” Cage told PEOPLE in an exclusive statement.

“However, I am under new business management and am happy to say that I am current for 2009, all taxes will be paid including any to be determined state taxes.”

Reported on back in October 2009, Cage owed more than $70,190 on his 2002 taxes, $179,738 for 2003, $110,617 for 2004 and a whopping $6,257,005 for 2007.

One could assume that such a liability could bring on a world of trouble from the IRS, yet, we hear little of that.  Rather, it appears that the IRS is interested in one thing – getting it’s money.

The opposite seems true when it comes to actor Wesley Snipes.  Wesley Snipes was charged with failure to file tax retures for years of 1999 thru 2004. Not even with his fancy expensive lawyers did the famous actor get away with it.  Rather, Wesley Snipes received the maximum penalty for not filing his tax return – 3 years.  While some think Snipes was railroaded, most of us know that Snipes was fighting an unwinable fight.

Go figure…now Snipes is trying hard to stay out of prison.  Guess he’s not as tough as he would like you to think when he’s acting in the movies.

Now – having spent time in prison for tax evasion (not something I’m proud of – but a fact nonetheless) I know what can get you in trouble with that branch of the government.  For information about my past visit here.

From Black Voices – Here are 4 things that can increase your likelihood of being audited by the IRS:

1) Having an income that is greater than $50,000 per year – When you make the cheese, you become a big fish and worth the time to audit. The IRS doesn’t have time to go after little wallets.

2) You are self-employed – Statistics show that self-employed people tend to do the most wiggling and fudging on their taxes, so having your own business flags you as an audit risk.

3) Making a mistake on prior tax returns – if you’ve made mistakes in the past, you are likely to make another one…at least more likely than everyone else. This will flag your return for a possible audit.

4) An excessive number of tax write-offs – if the dollar value of your deductions exceeds a certain percentage of your income, then the IRS may come after you. Make sure that any write-offs you have are well documented and legal. You don’t want to cheat on your taxes or get too greedy when filing.

Remember that tax problems can happen to anyone, so if you are subjected to an audit, don’t panic. Go buy a book on dealing with audits, “fess up,” pay your fine and go on with your life.


6 Responses to Nicolas Cage vs. Wesley Snipes – Both ran afoul of the IRS – Different approaches Different results

  1. janice says:

    nicolas cage is the most beautiful man I’ve ever seen on film
    although this is well preserved large

  2. Dave Miner says:

    Actually, Wesley Snipes DID get away with it. Media reports have been either sketchy or downright misleading about his victory.

    Snipes was charged with 2 felony counts, conspiracy and tax fraud. He was found not guilty on both counts. He was charged with six counts of willful failure to file. Three of those counts resulted from Snipes filing returns that listed his income as zero. He was found guilty of those three counts. Three other counts of willful failure to file resulted from not filing any returns for those years at all. He was found not guilty of those three count.

    So, yes, he did get away with it.

  3. jacqui bailey says:

    this is a disgusting travesty of justice nicholas cage should have been treated exactly the same way as mr snipes, it seems to me as if the judicial system is trying to hold back the african american society with its treatment of them, u hear of things with white actors but never r they treated to the same extent as black actors, if an actor can make a deal with irs then all actors should be given the same opportunity not sent to prison for the colour of his skin which is how this is perceived by some members of the public and before u all jump on me for my comments i am caucasian from uk

  4. […] Wesley Snipes – Both ran afoul […]

  5. Doc says:

    You guys are either stupid or you didn’t read the article. One person (Cage), agreed he’d erred, and paid the money owed.

    The other person (Snipes) threatened the IRS, and hired big shot tax attorneys to find loop holes, and in fact hosted “Steve Martin….you too can be a millionaire and not pay taxes” parties at his home.

    One person erred because of a change in tax law (Cage) the other preached insurrection (Snipes). Thats why Mr Cage is free and able to go on with his career, while the other has spent millions on attorneys and is set to start a 3 year jail sentence.

    I wonder how much WS will lose in income during those 3 years? Chances are much more than the original tax bill.

    Night and day!!!

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