D.C. Tax Lien on Google Simply a $300,000 Goof

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), January 18, 2013 | Go to article overview

D.C. Tax Lien on Google Simply a $300,000 Goof


Byline: Jim McElhatton, THE WASHINGTON TIMES

American humorist Mark Twain once said, The only two certainties in life are death and taxes - but then he never heard of the D.C. Office of Tax and Revenue and search engine giant Google. Put those two entities together and apparently nothing is certain.

While Google makes billions of dollars per year in profits, the company - for a few days anyway - found itself among a list of local scofflaws hit with tax liens filed by the D.C. government.

Yet within hours of receiving questions from The Washington Times about a lien that city tax officials filed against the company just this month, the D.C. government backtracked, saying the six-figure lien was a mistake while promising to quickly erase it.

The lien, filed with the D.C. Office of the Recorder of the Deeds and obtained by The Times, shows the city tax collector's office reported that Google had failed to pay more than $300,000 in corporate franchise taxes in 2010. The filing came just a few months after Google Inc. reported more than $14 billion in revenues for the third quarter of 2012, up more than 40 percent compared withthe same period in 2011. Then again, the company also came under scrutiny last month after reports that it avoided $2 billion in taxes by moving money to Bermuda.

But D.C. officials insist there's no reason for a lien against Google in Washington.

The lien was filed in error, and it is being removed, D.C. Office of Tax and Revenue spokeswoman Natalie Wilson wrote in an email Thursday. …

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D.C. Tax Lien on Google Simply a $300,000 Goof
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