I am a former White Collar Wife writing about my experience of recovery.

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     I began blogging on the subject of white collar wives after experiencing the devastating consequences of my, (former), husband's financial crime.  My goal was to reach other women who are suffering or have suffered as I did so that they wouldn't have to walk this dark and uncertain path alone. The blog also serves to educate the public regarding the stigma wives and families face as a result of guilt by association.  The truth is that wives and children are the FIRST victims of many white collar crimes as a result of the acute breach of trust and ensuing financial ruin that is brought upon them by a man whose primary obligation is to protect his family.  As a result of the positive response to my blog essays I created a private on-line support group, The Secret Lives of White Collar Wives.  The purpose of the group is to provide a safe and private place of acceptance and empowerment. Our community continues to grow both nationally as well as internationally.  Please contact me at lawlerlisa1@gmail.com for a private screening into the group. (A request made directly to the group page will not be accepted). 

     In addition to my advocacy work on behalf of white collar wives and families I have developed a lecture on ethics in the workplace. I urge all who are serious about compliance and risk to contact me for a compelling hour of "Truth and Consequences: Easy Money Isn't Easy" from a new voice with a new perspective on enforcement. Humans are vulnerable to many temptations and too often fail to consider the dire consequences one bad decision can have on their and their families lives. 

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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

WHITE COLLAR CRIME AND THE INNOCENT SPOUSE

     Last Friday I received a letter out of nowhere from MA Dot. Translation, the Massachusetts Department of Transportation. The letter informed me that unless I paid or made "arrangements to pay" the $464,000 tax assessment on funds my husband, (now ex), embezzled seven years ago they are going to suspend my driver's license and right to operate a motor vehicle, "indefinitely". This violation will be "punishable by law".  When I relayed this horror to one of my best friends she responded in this way: "My husband and I think this is just some kind of a hoax." I had to assure her that it was not. Yes people, the government taxes ill-gotten funds and if you are married at the time your spouse committed embezzlement then you too are liable for the taxes.  Even though the majority of the embezzled funds were returned, according to the MA DOR me and my ex-husband are responsible for taxes on the full amount. 

 

     After peeling myself off the floor I called the number on the form letter to inquire about this absurdity and was directed to "my case worker" at the MA DOR, (Massachusetts Department of Revenue), who informed me that they had indeed contacted MA DOT to suspend my license due to unpaid taxes.  My very kind case worker then told me that I should file for hardship status. That sounded pretty good to me until I got the form today which requests my banking information as well as my employer's name and telephone number and an income and expense balance.  It wasn't until I saw the form and ABSORBED it that I realized this was nothing more than an opportunity for the MA DOR to garnish my bank funds and my paycheck. So much for the kind lady. I then also realized that if I were to complete and return the hardship forms then I would be acknowledging that I am in fact liable to pay this money.  What I need is an abatement!! 

 

     I first received notice from the DOR that I was liable for unreported taxes, (by the way...they were also not reported to me by my husband),  three years ago.  I immediately filed all paperwork for Innocent Spouse Relief and Abatement and sent them to the MA DOR by certified mail.  I never received any kind of confirmation that I was denied or held liable so I wrote a letter to my tax advocate and this is the response I received: "Dear Taxpayer: The Massachusetts Department of Revenue is currently working on the inquiry about your inquiry in response to our inquiry please complete the MA Form 84 along with a Ma Form CA-6. If you have any questions...." Yes. It REALLY said this. Verbatim and without the period and capital P.  But I had already performed as requested many months earlier in sending these forms. Where is the due performance to me from the MA DOR??? This is what I'm dealing with folks. 

 

     Could it get any worse? That question has been asked and answered many times over the past seven years. As the MA Dot/DOR has given me only a few days to resolve this issue I have requested an extension to seek legal counsel but I'm sure my request will fall on deaf ears. How am I to resolve such an egregious legal action against me in just a few days?And how the hell am I going to afford an attorney? How am I going to get to work if I can't drive?? When does this nightmare end??? 

 

     The long arm of the law just keeps getting longer and the fallout of white collar crime is without end.