Lil Wayne Hit With a $5.6 Million Tax Lien
By: Kelly Phillips Erb
Last month, rapper Lil Wayne announced that he hoped to retire early in order to spend more time with his family. It seems, however, that Uncle Sam might have other plans. Lil Wayne, whose real name is Dwayne Michael Carter, Jr., may have to work a little longer in order to settle some unpaid tax debts.
Carter was recently slapped with a federal tax lien in the amount of $5.6 million. These aren't Carter's only federal income-tax liens. Last year, he was liened by the feds for more than $1 million for the tax years 2004, 2005 and 2007; he has reportedly paid off those obligations. These most recent liens reflect balances due of $3,351,078 for 2008 and $2,258,956 for 2009.
Carter, who turns 29 this year, has been rapping successfully for 20 years. Hegot his start at the age of nine with Cash Money Records; he was the youngest member of the new label at the time.
In 2008, the year for which Carter owes the most money to the IRS, the rapper had his most successful album ever, Tha Carter III. The album sold 1 million copies in its first week in the U.S. and more than 3.5 million in the U.S. overall; it has been certified triple platinum by RIAA and won the Grammy for Best Rap Album that year.
The year before Tha Carter III was released, Lil Wayne was charged with criminal possession of a weapon and, as a result, served time in New York. If this story sounds familiar, it is. Lil Wayne's story, one of a rapper jailed over a firearm while owing back taxes, is reminiscent of fellow rapper Ja Rule, who recently pleaded guilty to tax evasion in a federal court.
Lil Wayne was released from prison weapons charges late last year and iscurrently on his I Am Still Music Tour. It marks his first appearance on stage in more than a year.