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Sen. Wyden Asks Mazars for More Information About Trump Tax Returns

Ruth Singleton
Published Date:
May 25, 2022

Ron Wyden 450
Sen. Ron Wyden

Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, has sent a letter to Mazars USA LLP, asking for more information about the financial and tax documents that the firm prepared for Donald Trump and the Trump Organization.  

In a Feb. 14 court filing, New York Attorney General Letitia James revealed that Mazars had cut ties with Trump. Specifically, in a Feb. 9 letter to the chief lawyer for the Trump Organization, Mazars said that “the Statements of Financial Condition for Donald J. Trump for the years ending June 30, 2011 - June 30, 2020, should no longer be relied upon.” 

At the time, the Trump Organization responded by saying that it was disappointed with Mazars’ decision but viewed the letter as confirmation that the firm’s “work was performed in accordance with all applicable accounting standards and principles and that such statements of financial condition do not contain any material discrepancies.”

Sen. Wyden noted that it is “highly uncommon for a global accounting firm to directly cast doubt on the validity of its own work for a major client, not least a multi-billion dollar enterprise owned largely by an individual who went on to become the President of the United States. As Mazars and its predecessors were the sole accountants of record for Donald J. Trump and the Trump Organization for over a decade, these revelations raise questions as to whether financial statements and tax returns it prepared contain material discrepancies, omissions or errors, including information submitted to the  IRS.” 

Sen. Wyden added that since the Feb. 9 letter came to light, “recent news that Mr. Trump stated in sworn testimony that he directly oversaw the compensation of Trump Organization executives—a compensation scheme that now sits at the center of a broader tax fraud investigation—further heightens these concerns. In particular, Mr. Trump testified that he had exclusive authority over the compensation of Matthew Calamari Sr., Trump Organization Chief Operating Officer. Mazars’ February letter terminating its relationship with the Trump Organization also identified outstanding tax issues related to 'the Matt Calamari Jr. apartment' and noted that the Trump Organization has failed to provide Mazars information related to the apartment for several of months, despite Mazars’ continued request."

In his letter, Sen. Wyden asked, “Does Mazars stand by the accuracy of federal tax returns it prepared for the Trump Organization and its affiliates that were submitted to the IRS between 2011 and 2020? If not, why not? If so, how did Mazars conclude these returns were accurate despite Mazars’ statements that other financial reports prepared for the company could not be relied on?” He also asked, “Does Mazars believe that any federal tax returns it prepared for the Trump Organization and its affiliates that were submitted to the IRS between 2011 and 2020 may contain material discrepancies, omissions or errors? If so, has Mazars advised the Trump Organization or any of its affiliates to file amended returns with the IRS?"

Sen. Wyden asked additional questions seeking to find out, among other things, whether Mazars alerted any of the Trump Organization’s counterparties, including financial institutions, other lenders, and insurers that the Statements of Financial Condition for the years ending June 30, 2011 - June 30, 2020 were no longer to be relied upon; why Mazars decided to conduct an internal investigation into the reliability of those financial statements; and the nature of the “non-waivable conflict of interest” that Mazars referenced in the Feb. 9 letter. 

According to Accounting Today, Democrats in Congress have been pushing Trump to disclose his tax returns and additional financial information ever since the 2016 campaign, but so far much of the information has yet to come to light. 

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