If you owe more than $10,000.00 to the IRS or a state agency, it typically makes sense to hire a qualified tax attorney. A qualified tax attorney knows how to handle the IRS or state agencies and will act in your best interests. A qualified tax attorney can sometimes save you money which further justifies hiring a lawyer. When you hire a lawyer, you will never have to talk to the IRS which often relieves the stress and the anxiety that people frequently feel. Further, talking to the IRS without the advice of counsel is not a good idea because you are letting “the wolf into the hen house.”
Unfortunately, it is not easy to find a good tax attorney, although they are out there. Like any major decision, it is important that you carefully research the attorney that you intend to hire and don’t fall for false promises. Set forth below is a guide to assist you when hiring a tax attorney.
Beware of Tax Scams!
There are a lot of so-called tax resolution companies that promise to solve your tax problems. In deciding who to hire, we strongly urge you to keep the following guidelines in mind:
Research a tax resolution firm before hiring
An Internet search will often reveal that many large tax resolution firms have numerous complaints related to their poor service. No matter which firm you hire, we suggest you research that person or firm using Google, Yahoo!, Bing and other search engines. Your research will help you make the best decision as to who to hire. About half of our clients have hired somebody else prior to hiring us. Unfortunately, those taxpayers have lost many thousands of dollars and many months of time. Don’t make that mistake.
There is no set answer as to the cost of tax attorney’s fees in any given case. There are a number of variables, including how aggressive the IRS is being and the cooperation of you, the client, with us. The complexity of the case is also a factor in the cost of attorney’s fees. We offer affordable rates for every taxpayer.
This is a very difficult question. If the pending audit changes will affect this year’s tax return it may be advisable to wait until the audit has concluded before you file for this year. Sometimes there are urgent reasons why you must file this year’s tax return even though the audit has not yet concluded including loan applications, car loans, mortgage refinance and student loans. In that event, you may need to file an amended tax return after the audit has been concluded. If you can wait to file this year’s tax return until the audit has been concluded, don’t wait too long. Any refund listed on this year’s tax return may be barred by the refund statute of limitation if the tax return is not filed within three years of the due date plus any extensions.
The first thing you should do is to call a qualified tax attorney who will assist you with evaluating the strengths and weaknesses in your case. Also pay attention to the deadlines listed in the letter and be sure to not miss any deadlines with the IRS. The worst thing you can do is to contact the IRS directly. Anything you say can be treated as an admission against you.
The IRS has three years after the filing of a tax return to audit that return and levy additional taxes. If 25 percent or more has been left out of gross income claims, that statute of limitations increases to six years. If you fail to file any tax returns, the IRS can assess those taxes against you at any time.