Tax Attorneys: Your Advocates for Tax Relief and Tax Solutions
For some, tax time is the most anticipated time of year, bringing a large tax refund. For others, this time is filled with dread. If you’re facing tax problems, you likely fall into the latter group.
Perhaps you have a payment plan that you’ve stopped making payments on, you haven’t filed a tax return in years, or you think you’ve underreported your income. Maybe, you’re dealing with an audit, have unpaid back taxes, or are facing IRS collection actions.
If you’re dealing with any of these tax concerns, you may want to talk with a tax attorney. Tax attorneys serve as advocates for their clients, and they provide insight, guidance, and professional support into tax problems. Here’s an overview of how they can help.
Tax Representation Services
Tax attorneys fill an important role in the lives of those who have found themselves in hot water with the IRS. They offer an unmatched understanding of tax law, providing clients with easy-to-understand advice on tax codes and regulations.
As a taxpayer’s representative, they can work with the IRS on your behalf. The IRS does allow taxpayers to represent themselves in these matters, but with the right authorization, your attorney can handle communication with the IRS for you.
At Damien’s Law, we suggest the best path forward for our clients, and we also negotiate directly with the IRS to help our clients settle complicated tax matters. Our goal at all times is to bring relief to our clients, many of whom have carried the burden of tax anxiety for years.
You’re facing a huge tax bill or a long-overdue payment plan—what now? Well, when you contact a tax attorney, they will help you find the best relief option for your unique situation.
There are many tax relief options that may be available to you. The IRS wants to work with taxpayers. The agency doesn’t throw average taxpayers into jail or take their homes for getting behind. Instead, the agency has a number of relief options for different situations. However, you need to be proactive about pursuing relief. If you don’t, the IRS will come after you for the unpaid taxes.
- Payment plans: The IRS offers payment plan options to many taxpayers. If you can pay within the next six months, you can choose a short-term plan that lasts 180 days. A long-term plan, also known as an installment agreement, requires you to make monthly payments until the balance is paid off. If you default on a payment plan, know that the IRS is unlikely to offer you another one right away.
- Offer in compromise: If you owe so much that you can’t ever imagine getting ahead of it, but you do have the funds available to pay a portion of what you owe, an offer in compromise could be a great option. You pay a portion of the tax bill, and your debt is wiped clean. However, know that this option means that the IRS will get to go over your financial records in great detail to ensure that you truly are unable to pay.
- Currently not collectible: Perhaps you’ve hit a rough financial patch, and you genuinely don’t have the funds right now to pay your tax bill. Then, consider this option. If the IRS accepts your hardship request, your file will remain open, and penalties will continue accruing, but the IRS will temporarily stop collecting.
- Penalty abatement: It’s disheartening to know that penalties keep on accumulating even as you struggle to fix your tax issues. Penalty abatement may be an option for you when you work with our Mississippi tax relief lawyers.
How Your Attorney Can Navigate the Tax Laws to Help You
Tax laws are intricate and essentially incomprehensible to the average taxpayer. Tax attorneys can convey these concepts and potential solutions to clients. Furthermore, we know how to use tax laws to find relief options that the IRS won’t necessarily tell you about.
The IRS wants to collect as much money as it can, but it also wants to limit the amount of money it spends collecting tax debt. That means the agency is often open to negotiations if it means settling a tax debt, closing out a file, and moving on to their next taxpayer. Tax attorneys are experienced negotiators who know what the IRS is likely to offer, where their bottom line may be, and how they can best represent you against the agent assigned to your case.
They also understand nuanced aspects of the tax law that are evasive to most citizens. For example, if you’re dealing with a large tax bill, an experienced attorney may suggest amending your tax return to claim deductions you missed. Or if you’re requesting a settlement, they may successfully argue with the IRS about which expenses are allowed to be over the usual threshold or which assets shouldn’t be counted because they’re related to your work.
Those are just a few small examples. To put it simply, the more complex the issue, the more likely you are to need a tax attorney.
When you choose Damiens Law for your tax concerns, we get to work right away on understanding your problem and finding unique ways to solve it. First, we conduct a thorough investigation into your tax problem. Our goal is to understand what went wrong, any efforts you’ve made to repair it, and what your ultimate goal is.
From there, we will conduct a thorough financial analysis if your path to relief requires it. In some cases, the IRS will look at your finances to determine whether or not they can collect money from you—and our analysis will uncover this information. Finally, we’ll work with you to present our findings, provide our professional recommendations, and develop a plan to move forward.
Do You Need an Attorney, EA, or CPA?
If you’re like most troubled taxpayers, you may wonder what type of tax professional you need to resolve your tax issues. During your search, you’ve likely come across tax attorneys, certified public accountants (CPAs), and enrolled agents (EAs). Let’s look at all three options:
- Enrolled agents: Enrolled agents are licensed through the IRS to represent taxpayers in dealings with the IRS. They become licensed either through a three-part IRS test or through working as an IRS employee in the past. They must undergo continuing education every three years. There are limitations—they can represent taxpayers in administrative matters but not in tax court without additional licensure. Their education is useful in many scenarios, but may not extend to the legal side of tax concerns.
- Certified public accountants: CPAs are highly educated financial professionals who work in a wide range of accounting specialties. While many have experience in tax services, this isn’t their only area of expertise. For that reason, unless they specialize in tax debt resolution, they may not have the expertise needed to handle more complicated tax concerns and legal matters. However, CPAs can be very helpful when it comes to complex tax planning needs that can help you avoid tax issues in the future.
- Tax attorney: Tax lawyers can handle complex legal matters that neither enrolled agents nor certified public accountants are equipped to handle. They can represent you in administrative matters with the IRS, during negotiations, and in tax court if your situation rises to that level. When you choose an attorney who works solely or primarily in tax law, you can feel confident that their experience allows them to handle cases like yours.
Costs and Considerations
Cost is a primary factor for many of the clients who work with us. When you hire a tax attorney, you should consider the cost and make sure that you understand how their billing process works. However, you should never choose the cheapest option. Remember, an experienced professional is an asset to your situation, and they often end up saving you money in the long run.
When it comes to tax issues, who you choose to work with really matters. Some clients first seek the help of enrolled agents or CPAs, only to find out ultimately that their problems are outside their scope of practice. Then, they hire an attorney. This results in paying both the fee for the enrolled agent or CPA and the attorney’s fee.
If you want a tax solution that addresses every single aspect of your current issues, going to the professional most qualified to handle complex tax issues and legal concerns is usually the most cost-efficient and time-efficient option. Additionally, you can look for agencies that provide expertise from multiple angles; at Damiens Law, we have both tax attorneys and professionals with Master of Professional Accountancy (MPA) degrees.
A free consultation is your first step to tax relief. This meeting is completely free and does not obligate you to hire the attorney providing the consultation. Your tax issues have likely caused you an enormous amount of stress, and it’s important that you choose the right attorney for your needs. You should feel comfortable asking questions, requesting updates, and discussing your concerns with the attorney you hire.
Depending on your needs and preferences, your free consultation may take place in person or over the phone. The team member you speak with will ask specific questions about your financial situation, your tax concerns, and any communication you’ve received from the IRS. They’re trying to get a sense of your situation to see if they can help.
This is also your chance to ask questions to ensure that the attorney is a good fit. Feel free to ask about experience and cases handled that are similar to yours, client reviews, how they handle communication with the IRS and the general process they use to help clients. Don’t worry about asking too many questions or looking like you’re questioning the attorney’s experience—it is crucial that you do what is best for you and your financial situation.
After you finish your free consultation, take some time to think about the service you received. Would you feel comfortable approaching that team with an unexpected letter from the IRS or a list of questions? Did their answers make you feel relieved or more concerned? If the attorney seems well-experienced and helpful, then they’re probably the right option for you.
The path you choose for tax relief can have a significant impact on other aspects of your life. The amount of money you spend on settling a debt, how long you’re paying off your tax debt, your standing with the IRS, and your future tax obligations will all be affected by how you approach this issue. That’s why choosing the right attorney is critical.
One aspect to consider is an attorney’s credentials and specializations. If a law firm handles tax law in addition to criminal defense, family law, business law, and other areas of legal practice, look into who will actually be handling your case. You want to work with a team that works exclusively or primarily in tax law.
This area of practice is so complex and ever-changing that you should choose a lawyer who spends the bulk of their time staying up-to-date on changing tax laws and IRS requirements. This is one area where Damiens Law shines; managing attorney Joseph Damiens earned his Master of Laws LL.M. in Taxation after finishing law school, gaining additional education and expertise to better meet clients’ needs.
This ties into another important factor to consider: how confident is a firm with complex cases? Many tax issues have fairly simple answers and solutions, which can make an attorney feel ready to approach more complicated issues. But you don’t want to be an inexperienced attorney’s guinea pig as they figure out how to approach different IRS concerns—ideally, the attorney you choose will have a long list of tax concerns they have handled successfully and various solutions they are willing to try.
For example, the team at Damiens Law has handled everything from asset seizure, false tax returns, and tax audits to collection notices and liens. We explore every possible solution based on your needs, ranging from payment plans and an offer in compromise to currently not collectible status and bankruptcy. When you choose Damiens Law, you know that you are getting a personalized plan—not a one-size-fits-all solution.
Reading Reviews for Tax Attorneys
The right tax attorney for your needs will have a strong reputation. For many attorneys, the bulk of their clientele comes from referrals. Look at reviews on the attorney’s website and on other platforms, such as Google and Yelp. If an attorney has only glowing reviews on their website and a long list of one-star reviews on Google or Facebook, that’s a red flag. Our reviews page pulls client reviews from Google, Facebook, and other platforms to help you make an informed decision.
Take a look at a firm’s results. During your free consultation, you can ask about how they’ve handled cases similar to yours and their outcomes. Of course, no two cases are the same, but this question should be enough to show you whether or not the firm has a good track record with challenging tax cases.
Schedule Your Free Consultation Today
For over a decade, Damiens Law has been helping clients tackle all types of tax issues, including audits, unfixed tax returns, undisclosed income, back taxes, and more. We welcome you to schedule a free consultation so we can learn more about your current concerns and show you how we can help.
To get help, call us to discuss your tax needs and find out more about possible solutions. Just call us at 901-350-4289 or contact us online now.