SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — A woman known nationwide as the Tax Lady will not be facing prison time or paying tens of millions of dollars she was being sued for.
Roni Deutch seemed to be everywhere, promising TV viewers she would help them resolve their problems with the Internal Revenue Service.
Deutch was sued in 2010 by the state of California, which claimed she participated in a scheme to take money from clients while mishandling their tax problems. In 2011, she announced she shuttered her offices because of the suit.
Around the same time, she was accused of multiple counts of contempt of court for allegedly not following court orders to save documents and pay back clients.
“Today was significant because it resolves the entire matter for my client Roni Deutch, and it lets her move on with her life,” her attorney Ken Rosenfeld said on Friday. “When this case happened, to my knowledge, it was the largest criminal filing in the state of California.”
He says the case is over. Deutch will be forced to pay $2.5 million instead of the $34 million in the civil suit against her business operation. She will pay $10,000 in fines and do 350 hours of volunteer service for the contempt allegations in exchange for dropping the charges.
Rosenfeld insists Deutch never meant to hurt anyone, rather her business exploded and it was tough to handle.
“It got enormous, but her heart was in the right place,” he said. “It has been devastating to her, but it will not destroyed her. Roni Deutch will be heard from again.”
Deutch surrendered her law license in the process, but the ruling makes it clear she can try to get it back.