Lawyers Explain Delay in Releasing Donald Trump’s Tax Returns

Donald J. Trump, ahead of Tuesday’s Wisconsin primary, held a campaign event in Janesville, Wis., this week.

By Alan Rappeport – – – – –

Despite earlier promises that he would release his tax returns, Donald J. Trump is continuing to withhold them, and on Wednesday night he shared a note from his tax lawyers explaining the delay.

Mr. Trump has said that he is being audited by the Internal Revenue Service, adding that it would be unwise for him to release his tax documents during this process.

In a letter to Mr. Trump that was dated March 7, two tax lawyers, Sheri Dillon and William Nelson, detailed the complexity of his financial portfolio and said that his tax returns have been under continuous examination by the I.R.S. since 2002.

Mr. Trump has been pressed to release returns that are no longer under audit, but his lawyers said in the letter that the examinations that date to 2009 are linked to previous audits that have been closed.

Mr. Trump’s lawyers did not say that the Republican presidential front-runner was barred from releasing his returns while they are being audited.

Critics of Mr. Trump, including Mitt Romney, have suggested that there could be a “bombshell” in the returns and have said that Republican voters have a right to more information about his finances before potentially nominating him.

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