The Cheating of America: How Tax Avoidance and Evasion by the Super Rich Are Costing the Country Billions--and What You Can Do About It

Author: Charles Lewis
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by mundo   2017-12-07
"If you owe the bank $100 that's your problem. If you owe the bank $100 million, that's the bank's problem."

The book "The Cheating of America" goes in to great detail about how this works (for individuals, not corporations) and it is pretty much guaranteed to make your blood boil. It goes through case studies on a number of specific people - how much they owed, what they did, what the government did, and how it all ended up - but the tl;dr is that it's fairly common for very rich people to end up negotiating a settlement for ~20-40% of their tax bill, 2-5 years after it was due. The quote I remember from it was something like "For those who have tax lawyers on retainer, the number at the bottom of a return is less like a final offer than an opening bid."