Part I: Gang of Eight Breaks Promise on Back Taxes

A close analysis of the Gang of Eight’s amnesty bill (S.744) shows that illegal aliens will in fact not be required to pay back taxes in order to receive legal status, which the bill calls “registered provisional immigrant” (RPI) status.

This conclusion turns on one word used in the text of the bill: “assessed.”  Under S.744, an alien may not even file an application for RPI status “unless the applicant has satisfied any applicable Federal tax liability.”  (Sec. 2101, p.68-69)  “Applicable federal tax liability” is defined as “all Federal income taxes assessed.”  (Id.)

While this sounds good at first blush, one must look closer at the exact words used.  First, “taxes assessed” does not mean “taxes owed.”  A tax is “assessed” when the IRS officially records that a person owes a tax. (See, e.g., Warren, Gorham & Lamont Treatise on Tax Controversies, § 3.01; Warren, Gorham & Lamont Treatise on Tax Procedures, § 10.01) A tax assessment can happen in two ways.  One, an individual files a tax return, tells the IRS what he owes, and, after correcting any mathematical errors, the IRS records it.  (See 26 U.S.C. §6201) Two, the IRS audits an individual—whether or not he has filed a return—and, after giving the taxpayer an opportunity to contest, records how much the person owes.  (See 26 U.S.C. §6212)

This leads to two possible scenarios in which the “back taxes” of an illegal alien will have been “assessed.”  In the first scenario, the illegal alien has filed a tax return and the IRS has “assessed” any unpaid portion of the reported tax.  This will be a rare scenario since an illegal alien is unlikely to file a return reporting taxes that he is unable or unwilling to pay, for fear of causing trouble with the federal government.  In the second scenario, the illegal alien is working off the books, has not filed a return, and has been audited by the IRS.  This will also be a very rare scenario since the IRS has no knowledge of the alien’s existence.  In short, despite the promises of the authors, the Gang of Eight has drafted a tax provision that will almost never require illegal aliens to pay “back taxes” as a condition of receiving amnesty.

Other language in the bill supports this conclusion.  For example, there is no requirement that the alien present himself to the IRS for a tax assessment before or during the application process.  Nor is there any requirement that an alien submit specific information (employment history, wages, etc.) that would indicate that taxes are owed.  And even if S.744 required illegal aliens to submit such information to DHS when they apply for amnesty, there is no requirement that DHS share it with the IRS in order to allow an assessment. 

Not only does the Gang of Eight bill utterly fail to make illegal aliens pay federal back taxes as a condition of getting amnesty, there is no requirement that illegal aliens pay state or local back taxes either.  Finally, the Gang of Eight gives employers their own amnesty by failing to require that they too pay back taxes for any illegal aliens they employed over the years.  In fact, the Gang of Eight amnesty bill provides that any documents provided by an employer to enable an illegal alien to apply for amnesty may not be used against him in a civil or criminal prosecution for hiring that illegal alien. (Sec. 2104, p.120).

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  3. avatar
    Mass Immigration Is Unsustainable on

    “Gang of Eight Breaks Promise on Back Taxes”

    Who could have predicted that? 🙂

    Oh, and the good old learn English “requirement” turned out to be nothing of the sort. Another shocker.

  4. avatar

    1) Von brought up an important point on 4/26/13. How to deal with back taxes owed by illegal immigrants without dealing with the crime of identity theft and the suffering of those whose Social Security numbers were stolen?
    2) Most likely, the media will turn on the sympathy machine. There will be stories like this: Jose and Maria, former undocumented workers, shared a one-bedroom apartment in a rough area with their three children. Now, with the fine and back taxes they must pay under the new law, they’re in a studio apartment in the worst area. Since Jose was mugged, they face eviction despite Maria’s 14-hour work days. (And there would be video of sad faces and sobbing, with no mention of the harm done to American workers and earlier immigrants by illegal immigration and mass immigration).

    • avatar

      i am a american citizen was born here and pay my taxes. It sure isn’t fair that when i was in that same situation i LIVED IN A MOTEL 6 WITH 2 KIDS AND ALL I could only get 14 dollars in food stamps no cash and no other help. so no i don’t feel sorry for anyone who sneeks here and lives under the radar. and doesn’t pay taxes but gets everything handed to them. WHICH I PAY for WITH MY TAXES. where is the government when citizens need help? THEY NEED ALL THE RIGHT DOCUMENTATIONS TO EVEN GET THE PAPERWORK GOING. thats where. i’m not okay with free help for anyone not even myself.

  5. avatar

    Its Not Just Back Taxes

    The new immigrants send a lion’s share of this Ameican wages chunk to thier motherlands, along with their drug money profits.

    There goes our tax base.

  6. avatar

    I want to know why – why this administration turns it back on citizens in favor of illegals who have broken U.S. laws by entering the U.S. illegally or overstayed their visas – and why do some members of congress also turn their backs on citizens. What do they gain? Who are they really helping? Something has to be in it for them.

    If you’ve not seen it, and it hasn’t been yanked yet, there is a video on You Tube. It shows a seminar on how to eliminate applications so that it appears there are no qualified citizens in the S.T.E.M. area jobs. It’s titled Cohen & Grigsby, perm fake job ads. It’s worth a watch although your blood will probably boil as did mine.

    • avatar

      Unfortunately,one need only look at dozens, if not hundreds of ads that are so specific in their requirements, that if you do not graduate in set periods of time,in prescribed schools,levels of expertise,etc., as ALL the ads are simply reciting the actual CV of an alien who has already been recruited.Thus, even in the now rarer instance of “legal” i mmigration,individuals, their spouse,children,siblings,parents,etc., are going to gain entry,or,in this case,stay and bring in all acquaintances.In addition,the not so big eight are misrepresenting initial terms.For example, all crow about a 10 year waiting period to get a green card:that is a fraud.The bill calls for waiving such period for anyone doing ANY farm work-or claiming such.How do we disprove such a contention?Particularly, as most Mexicans, and Latin Americans ,in fact ,have had what they would call “agricultural experience” as many work as children, and /or help the family by tending local gardens, which are common in Latin America among those typically seeking work here because they lack high levels of formal education or sophisticated job skills.This bill is a farce,which, even if it passes the Senate because of the lying of even so called right wing Republicans,it will not pass in the House,where the Tea Party has more than the four members in the Senate:this has always been Obama’s plan to get back the House-then he passes toilet paper for the laws he will the ignore anyway.

  7. avatar
    nihad mohamed on

    I can’t believed what I am reading ,,is this a joke or a nightmare???!!!! Are they politicians or thieves selling USA to illegal personal???? This is the beginning of USA weakness and corruption ,,these legislatures must be under full investigation to now there real motive for such bill ???!!! Where is our rights the legal immigrants no work, health insurance,,, nothing nothing,,,and then they speak about fiscal deficits,,,whom are they fooling!!! An inquiry must be done about these 8 gangs legislators,,,there are thieves and misleading to pass such an amnesty?? We don’t need. These illegal ,,,let back to school programs qualify the legal immigrants and unemployed to learn and taught how to fulfill the works that they want illegal immigrants to do,,,I am choked this is the end of USA,..USA is going down the drawn,,,wake up wake up wake up

  8. avatar

    It doesn’t address the back taxes issue, it also doesn’t address them using stolen identities issue either. You can’t very well prove the back taxes if they don’t address the stolen identities. People have spent thousands of dollars and suffered for years trying to prove their identities were stolen. These people have wrecked lives of whole families and they just want to give them a pass??? If they do nothing more than work using your social security number the money they make gets credited to you so the tax bill comes to you. But we are supposed to feel sorry for them and give them a pass on all that “because they were just trying to get a better life for their kids”, what about my kids?

    • avatar

      Yes, what about your kids. I’m so sick of hearing that all they want is the “American Dream”. What about our Ameican Dream that our own kids receive a good education, etc.? Our dreams are forgotten. Here in Georgia we spend a fortune educating the children of illegals while we constantly see cuts in education funding for our own kids. I just wish that US citizens and the unemployed had just half the advocates that the illegals have.

  9. avatar
    Jim McCormack on

    Get real-Enforce our laws-Send lawbreakers home .Make Welfare earn their keep and get back to a realistic economy.

  10. avatar

    I think this is a very poor way of requiring these applicants to pay their Federal Taxes. Does this mean that the IRS must send the applicant a bill?

  11. avatar

    Lies, lies, and more lies then amnesty, after a few years start over lies, lies, and more lies, then amnesty ETC.

  12. avatar

    citizens want end to illegal immigration.
    illegal immigrants burden taxpayers.
    enforce our laws all others country enforces laws.

    • avatar

      Yes, yes, yes! What are we sending to Washington to represent us? I’ll tell you traitors to our Constitution and US Citizens!

  13. avatar

    I don’t care what this “gang” promises, these are the ultimate liars of the Senate, Lindsay Graham makes me sick everytimne he opens his mouth, he never speaks a true or a sincere word. None of them do. They are letting in these millions of people, people we will have to support when we do not have the money ot support our own. This countrty is not a shop mart, Senators and President wannabees can just shop around and get new voters this way, they let them in if they voite for them, they have been doing this since Clinton, this should be illegal , Now these new immigrants will get jobs not offered ot Americans out of work and they are bilingual, they are in all the hospitals, all Indians and philopenos, some hospitals its africans and Haitians, they seem to be able to find work for all of them so why are american men stil sitting home wihtout a job. ? Marco Rubio is Hispanic, and he fought to get these people in along with the gang of eight, he should have stayed out of it, there was a list of the men who are running for President, 4 years from now, he was on it, he is not eligible but there he was, another Obama. if this is going ot happen we might as well all get out of the country, this is no tlonger America.

  14. avatar

    Why not just quantify the cost of (criminal) invaders and “legal” alien workers before we make criminal activity legal? All US executive and legislative officers are sworn by oath of office to uphold the Constitution and laws of the land! We have 23 million citizens looking for a job, 11 to 30 million criminal aliens illegally, mingling in society, working, and on welfare; a Homeland Security buying billions of bullets; giving war weapons to Muslim Brotherhood terrorists while simultaneously labeling citizens terrorists for demanding government obey the Constitution and law; world-wide active military operations… and here they are, demanding amnesty for criminal aliens… because they “like them”. Oath, law, citizen cost, and citizenship means nothing! Why are they not facing impeachment?

    It’s about corruption, plunder, and “the plantation”, not race. Citizens are taxed to feed & nurture terrorists!

    $43,500 is the average US wage. The range is near nothing to millions! Unequivocally, individual unemployment cost is $63,500 – the wage plus a minimum $20,000 for comp, food stamps, etc.
    It’ jumps to $83,500 each when the criminal alien is on the food stamp gravy train!
    If we have 12 million criminal alien workers the cost is $1 TRILLION/yr! We have between 11 and 30 million illegal aliens and a near endless supply of “guest” alien workers, immigrants, & students with hands in your wallet. They’re bankrupting the US, ($17 trillion debt), plus SSI (2 trillion in a fund that should contain $100+ trillion @ current taxation rates!) and all other citizens “benefits”!

    We’ll balance the budget when we get rid of officials who defy oath obligations that begin and end with God, citizens, and country! It’s a matter of “enforcing the Constitution and law” without exception!

    We’ll have record surpluses the minute we end corruption, such as political monopolists (unlimited contributions to campaigns), the energy monopolies, union monopolies, and corporate monopolies. They were illegal just a few years ago & penalty was triple damages + jail.

  15. avatar

    WHAT back taxes can an illegal alien (at least most of them) owe? Do they pay taxes on their welfare, food stamps, HUD housing, free health care? How much tax is owed by a minimum wage worker anyway? What about the child credit, earned income credit, and all the rest of the welfare through the tax code? Once these people start, there is no stopping what they can rip us off for.

  16. avatar

    What a surprise! First, the need to learn English is dropped, now paying back taxes is not necessary. Anyone want to bet that the whole plan will be tossed out and by Presidential fiat, illegals will get a blanket amnesty and not one of them will have to do anythng but keep on keeping on?

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  18. avatar

    It’s all one lie after another. There is no way all this can be checked, much less do all the untangling that would be required for general background checks. The gang of 8 must be cursing their luck with the story of the Boston bombings coming at such an inopportune time, but this incident reveals that we already have little idea of the people in this country and they actually want to INCREASE legal immigration.

    The gang of 8 argument is that we will know who is here. Well, we KNEW they were here, they were admitted LEGALLY. This story also refutes a lot of the propaganda about immigrants can’t get welfare. It’s a fact that most single people can’t get welfare of any kind anyway. The welfare generally comes with a family, and that is how a lot of these people collect welfare, because of their US born children. Maybe the immigrant TECHNICALLY does not get it, but we are paying for the support of their families. It’s why California is dead broke and owes hundreds of billions in unfunded future obligations.

  19. avatar

    This is sad, but there are plenty of Legal citizens paying backup taxes if not they go to jail. I guess we have to keep working hard to pay taxes so the illegal immigrants can keep getting their benefits.

    • avatar
      Veronica M reimann on

      Yes, I Agree. 16 yrs ago in So. California, My husband arrived for a job he was suppose to start the following Monday. He had a major heart attack over the weekend , so he never made it to the job site. Thankfully they saved his life, But with no Ins. his bill for 63 hrs in the hospital was just over $43000.00. I flew in to be with my husband and I hoped to take him back to Utah They informed me that they would not release him till I paid up front $5000.00 cash or credit card, after release we had to stay in So Ca. for another two and half months for care under his surgeon. ( Who was wonderful to us) . I finally arrange to pay the balance on a monthly basis. But my point is , I was informed that if my husband was an minority or illegal or made $25,000.00 a year or less it would be free. (There is no such thing as free, someone has to pay, That’s the tax payer) We paid off every penny
      Three weeks before his 65 birthday. at his job site in Tulsa OK. he has another heart attack. we had just paid off the first heart attack by two weeks. Same thing. Again we paid monthly till we paid it all off. My husband is now 78 and still working to play catch up with our retirement. My husband volunteered in the Af in the Korean era and will probably work till the day he dies, If he can, so you can see why I am perturbed with all the ILLEGAL aliens who come here .

      • avatar

        Your story is rather common I think. Illegals merely walk into an ER and it’s all paid by the taxpayers.

      • avatar

        Many years ago my wife miscarried & I had no insurance, but a very good job at the time. Went in to pay & before I could get my wallet out, admissions told me I’d have to pay the bill in full to take her home. I put my wallet back in my pocket & told them they’d just have to wait, looked the person in the eye & told them they could either release her right now or I’ll call the police. Holding someone ransom for a debt is very serious! I paid them the next day.

        It was another time & life. It was a good hospital with good people, just some idiot out in left field. she was in 2 days & if I remember right the cost was a little over $100 – a little over a weeks pay for most, certainly not unreasonable at the time Today, almost anything is a year’s wages. Don’t agree to anything or pay anything until they agree to a reasonable amount in writing. Typical billings are 2 to 3 times too much because of free medical care passed on to sick & injured citizens at a time when they’re sick or incapacitated. A cash billing should be less that an insurance net billing, because insurance holds money back & is a hassle It’s a “TAX” blessed & assessed by our sick corrupted government!

      • avatar

        Hi Veronica,
        I agree with you. Even if those people(illegals,etc.) are making more than 25K they are being paid under the table and get their health care free b/c they don’t have any record of the wages they are making. I live in Texas (unfortunately) and my neighbors apply for free lunches for their children, free gifts at Christmas thru a program called Goodfellows, and these are only the things I know about…. who knows what federal programs they are using. There are 3 people working in the house and all have either new cars or very late model vehicles and they try to suck up all they can get.

      • avatar

        I know of a US citizen being turned down for life saving heart surgery twice by Medicaid. The doctor told them to apply again and put on application Hispanic. They were approved no questions asked and got he surgery!

      • avatar

        To gain votes for the LIBERAL democratic party that promotes more government . They want votes from low information voters who don’t even have to register to vote or prove who they are.

      • avatar

        Change your name to Gomez and you’re home free! This is total insanity and a trick of democrats to push the liberal agenda…soon to be the socialist agenda.