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Cook County Revenue Dept. chasing collar dealers for tax assessments

July 7, 2011
Some collar county dealers who are registered as tax collectors with the Cook County Department of Revenue have received notice of jeopardy tax determination and assessment for failing to file monthly tax returns with the department.
The department recently switched to a new automated system that helps it quickly identify delinquent periods or periods for which neither a tax return nor payment is remitted. Businesses registered as tax collectors with the Cook department receive 12 pre-printed monthly tax returns each year, and all must be remitted.
Penalties for failure to file can be steep: (a) 25 percent failure to file penalty—failure to file a tax return for each period or month identified in the Revenue Department notice; and (b) 50 percent failure to remit collected taxes penalty—failure to remit tax due for each month identified in the notice.
Interest is calculated as the total number of months late, as of the date of the jeopardy notice, multiplied by the standard monthly interest rate of 1.25 percent (.0125).
Written protests and petitions which challenge any assessments can be submitted on forms provided by the Revenue Department. The department reportedly has no immediate plans to investigate or audit affected businesses, although it does not waive its right to conduct an audit or investigation later.