[Post updated] Recently we were contacted by lawyers for NOVA Benefit Plans. Their lawyers have asked that we remove our NOVA posts while they challenge various information requests and the search of their headquarters by IRS special agents. As of this morning, our posts have been taken offline while NOVA and government prosecutors sort matters out.
As we have always stated, NOVA maintains that their plans are legal. Court challenges regarding the validity of the plans and the search of NOVA’s headquarters are far from complete. The court challenges could last for months or years. As of this writing, NOVA has not been charged with any criminal wrongdoing.
If you are approached by an insurance agent or other financial professional and asked to invest in a benefit plan, consult a tax attorney before you invest. If you lost money or are facing IRS penalties, call us.
Those wishing to view the NOVA search warrant affidavit should contact the Clerk of Court for the United States District Court of Connecticut. The cost is $2.40 if purchased online.
On Christmas Eve, 2016, U.S. District Court Judge Robert Chatigny ruled in favor of the government and refused to suppress the search warrants. Although he refused to quash the warrants the court did issue an order sealing the search warrant affidavit.
NOVA principal Daniel Carpenter, facing pending criminal charges, had claimed that the search warrant applications were tainted by false and misleading statements, the warrants failed to describe the items to be seized with sufficient particularity and the warrants were overbroad. He also complained about the manner in which the searches were conducted and the length of time documents have been retained.
Carpenter asked for an order preventing use of the documents at his trial and demanded documents seized pursuant to the warrant be returned to him.
After a series of trials and appeals, the man behind NOVA, Daniel Carpenter, was ultimately convicted and sentenced to prison. Even after his conviction, Carpenter continued to appeal, sometimes successfully. As of this writing, he was sentenced to 36 months in Massachusetts and 30 months in Connecticut. (You can read more about the nine lives of Daniel Carpenter here.)
As always, our fraud recovery and tax attorneys continue to review welfare benefit plans from any issuer, including NOVA, Benistar and their affiliates. We will gladly assist in defending you if you are selected for an IRS audit and pursue promoters and sellers of plans that the IRS disallows.
Despite some pretty convincing legal opinions and glossy marketing brochures, 419 and related welfare benefit programs are largely considered abusive tax shelters by the IRS. Invest in one and you could be paying huge penalties. We believe the promoters of these schemes are responsible for any losses and IRS tax penalties.
For more information, contact Brian Mahany online or by phone at (202) 800-9791. All inquiries kept strictly confidential.