A question that nearly everyone has on their mind when they have to deal with tax issues is how can tax lawyer help me? In this piece, we will try to look at different angles to help you answer the “how can tax lawyer help me?” question. But before we head on, let’s start with the very basics of who are tax lawyers, the questions you must ask yourself before hiring one, identifying the need to hire one, reasons which make hiring a tax lawyer suitable in your case and finally how can tax lawyer help me.
If you need help with any tax problem, please call us at 407-502-2400, or email us at [email protected].
Who Are Tax Lawyers?
Often a misconception, tax lawyers don’t exclusively practice tax litigation. They also cater to many other tax-related issues other than the ones linked to IRS alone for both individuals and corporations. These may include:
- Documenting and structuring business entities.
- Steering complex laws and tax codes.
- Overseeing and supervising business tax plans to legally reduce tax burdens.
- Advising their clients both individuals and corporations on financial planning, tax, and real estate.
- Handling disputes between corporations/ individuals before the IRS.
But that is not all which answers the “how can tax lawyer help me” question. Possibly one of the most important ways a tax lawyer can be of your help is reducing the level of stress experienced by anyone whenever they hear the word taxes. When you have the support of a tax lawyer beside you when dealing with IRS, you feel satisfied and confident that someone who has better knowledge of all these dealings is on your side.
Questions To Ask Before Choosing a Tax Lawyer
But not every tax lawyer can be of help, which is why choosing the one that is right for you becomes pivotal. Usually, lawyers charge very minimum or at times offer consultations to understand what they are against and what are the possible steps to tackle a certain tax situation. Then depending on the hassle the lawsuit may inculcate, they let their clients know what they will be charging for their services.
Under this heading, we are providing you with a list of questions to help you make a better judgment about your tax lawyer as chances are you will be spending the next few months with him nearly once every week.
Ask your potential tax lawyer these ten questions and then decide whether he is any good to you or not.
For how much long they have practiced law?
There is no shame in asking about the qualifications and expertise of the tax attorney under consideration. It is your right to know what he can do for you. Also, once you come to know about his expertise on the matter, you will know whether he is a beginner or a veteran. But don’t reject someone on the basis that is fresh out of school. Someone who is new to the field is more dedicated and committed to resolving your issues. He needs to set a good reputation and you need a good tax lawyer. Both of your can help each other get what they want.
What are the types of cases they normally handle?
How can tax lawyer help me if hasn’t worked or taken any case similar to mine in the past? That is a question that matters more than the earlier one. Even if you have got your hands on the best lawyer, if he hasn’t got any prior experience in the kind of case you are faced with, he is no good to you.
For instance, if your case involves the adoption of a child, you may want to consider someone who has worked child cases before. Their practice area is one thing that will help you better assess their expertise.
Who is their typical clientele?
Often overlooked, this should be considered an important question to ask your tax lawyer. Knowing the type of clients they usually take is what will help you determine if the tax lawyer is right for you or. For instance, if the specialty of a well-reputed tax lawyer is corporations and you have a personal case to represent, he might not be the best option for you.
How many cases like mine have they handled before and what was their success rate?
For many reasons, this should be considered the most important question and definitely the first one to your mind. You may think your case is a special one, but it might not be that unique. Feel free to ask them if they have worked a case like yours before and who knows they might have. Next, ask them what is the success rate of such cases and what were the most critical factors involved.
Do they have any knowledge or special training others than just a law degree that can be applied to my situation?
There are some cases that require special training and knowledge to tackle them such as cases of patent or DUI. Once you are sure that your case fits into any of these two categories, see if the potential candidate had the knowledge and the extra skills to represents you better or not. You want all the odds to go in your favor so why to compromise when you can have any other tax lawyer with the knowledge and training to handle it.
What is the billing structure and what will the potential tax lawyer charge as his fee?
Before asking yourself how can tax lawyer help me, see if you have the monetary resources to afford one. If your case is a special one and you want only experts handling it, you must prepare yourself finically to bear the costs. Always ask what the professional will charge for the services and will he be only on handling the case.
For instance, if you are hiring a tax firm, ask them how many legal assistances will be working on the case and will there be any extra charges if the case gets more severe? On the other hand, do ask them if the case gets resolved much quicker than you had anticipated, will the charges be reduced? This will help you as an individual to plan your finances accordingly in the future. You will better comprehend if you will be able to afford the services or not. Secondly, also ask about the different payment/billing options.
Can there be any other ways to resolve my issue that doesn’t involve a courtroom?
If only your case can be solved outside the courtroom, what can be better? During the meeting or consultation, ask the professional if there are any alternatives to solve the case such as through an arbitrator or out of court settlement. Not only will this save you time and money, it will also take the pressure and stress off you that you have been burdening yourself with.
What will be the means of communications used by you to keep me updated about my legal case?
In cases that involve confidentially, trust and understanding, communication is the key. You must also ask your potential lawyer how many times and under what special circumstances will the lawyer updates them about their situation. It is also right to know when the date of your case or hearing is and whether it will help your case if you attend it. You can also ask how much involved or uninvolved can you be in your case.
What are my chances of winning or solving my case?
Again, there is no shame in asking your prospect tax lawyer that question. You are investing your money and monetary resources, the least they can offer you are stats about your chances of solving the case. You simply can’t shy out from asking this. You need to know what the winning chances are so that you can prepare yourself beforehand for the outcome. They may not have an answer straight away but they can tell from their experience your chances of winning such cases if they have worked the area before.
When to Hire a Tax Attorney
There may be incidents that you have fallen behind on your taxes and the IRs is knocking down your door to collect them. This situation may get scarier as no one really wishes to deal with the IRs on their own. You may have handled many cases of lower tax caliber on the past, but there are some unique and serious cases that require you to hire a tax lawyer.
Here are some of the cases that may make hiring a professional tax lawyer an obligation:
You are being audited by the IRS
If such is the case, you may need someone to repent you legally. How can tax lawyer help me in such a situation? He can help you in negotiating a settlement between you and the IRS. In such cases, they can help you settle debts with less money.
They can do so in different ways such as offering a compromise, including an installment agreement or penalty abatement etc. But IRS rarely believes in such offers of compromise unless you have a really good story as a backup and little to no assets to fight the case.
You need someone to communicate on your behalf with the IRS
Communicating and handling legal issues with the IRS can be very daunting and stressful at the same time. If you let tax lawyer help you in such a situation, you at least have on your side someone who is better skilled to tackle such issues. Once you sign the power of attorney, your tax lawyer can speak for you on your behalf and represent you case in the court in front of the IRS. Believe it or not, this will hugely reduce your stress.
You have received a CP notice
What can be scarier than receiving a CP notice? A CP notice is a scary reminder from the IRS about the balance due although this many not always be the case. CP notices can be very complicated to understand. In the worst case scenario, they can turn out to be a much bigger problem than what you had, though. If you have received any such notice, it is the time you consult a tax lawyer.
If the IRS plans to pursue criminal charges against you
In such is the case, you are in real trouble. This is a very serious issue at hand and also one that is impossible for you to handle on your own. You need to understand that the IRS to doesn’t wish to do so. Pursuing charges against someone is also their last resort. If it has come to this, however, you must talk to your tax lawyer immediately. This happens usually in cases of income tax evasion. You are required by the law to pay your taxes and if you don’t it can be taken as an act of hiding or trying to commit tax fraud, which is not something you want. The last thing you want is to end up in prison for being fined large. Your tax attorney may not fully dissolve the charges; they can, however, reduce the penalty.
Other Possible Scenarios
There are many other scenarios in which you may find yourself asking how can tax lawyer help me here. People need to understand that there are many other conditions under which taking the help of a tax lawyer and his legal advice can benefit you. You don’t have to hire a tax lawyer when you are under hot water for offenses like tax evasion alone. The question how can tax lawyer help me can also be answered if the tax attorney helps you in dealing with the following scenarios:
- You are obligated to pay IRS more than $10,000.
- You wish to file a lawsuit against IRS.
- You are being investigated by IRS.
- You believe you might have committed tax fraud or aren’t sure if you have.
- You don’t agree with the tax decision taken by the IRS.
- You are just planning to invest your capital in a company and want advice from an expert on how to proceed with the structure and laws.
- You need legal advice on your business running overseas.
- You are filing and extra tax return or preparing an estate plan.
- You are dealing with issues of taxes that you don’t fully understand and need a consult.
How Can Tax Lawyer Help Me?
Anyone who has been in a dispute with the IRS or has some debts to pay must be thinking how can tax lawyer help me? Well, there are many things a tax lawyer can do for you – the things you simply can’t afford to do on your own.
You may have signed or filed many online taxes and start to believe that you don’t need experts to handle your case. What these people fail to realize is how complicated the tax code can be. How can tax lawyer help me and why do I need to hire one? It is the sole duty of the tax lawyer to make sure you get a big refund in your email and not a notice for audit from the IRS.
Here are five very genuine answers to the “how can tax lawyer help me?” question:
Keep their clients out of Jail:
The very first thing a tax lawyer can do for you is try to keep you out of jail. Many taxpayers don’t understand the penalties for not filing taxes until it is too late. They can be pretty serious with you ending up in jail for failing to pay in a timely manner. Taxpayers can’t go to jail for not paying their taxes but they can be imprisoned for trying to cheat on them. How can tax lawyer help me if I have unknowingly committed tax fraud or crime? A tax lawyer can help you by keeping you on the right track and counsel you on the honest and dishonest filings that may get you into trouble if you don’t fully understand the terms and conditions.
Take action against IRS Audit and other Collection Notices:
If you owe some money to the IRS and the government comes knocking on your door, you need some expert’s support to handle the situation. Dealing with issues related to IRS such as interviews, notices, and other such procedures can be really daunting. There may be times that the IRS may have mistaken you for more taxes than what you own, but only a tax advocate can discover those mistakes and fight on your behalf.
Steer baffling IRS Documents:
One cannot expect a layperson to understand or fully comprehend over 2000 IRS publications and forms. Only an expert can guide on these complex tax procedures, ranging from tax listing to arcane deductions like weight loss programs, dental expenses etc.
Counseling on how to reduce taxes:
You may have gotten this year’s taxes filed and cleared, but you may be worried about next year’s big tax hit. If you are thinking how can tax lawyer help me in this, he/she can do so by counseling and advising you on the different approaches and ways you can lower your taxes in the future and avoid tax liabilities, while figuring out which approaches are most suitable for adoption in your case.
Figure out Your Taxes (self-employment/business):
There are many different income tax filings and all individuals, corporations and businesses are taxed differently. As for corporations, they may be considered ‘people’ in court, but if you are self-employed and are faced with a notice from the IRS, there are many things to consider for which you will be taxed. These may include information about the days you worked from home, telecommute you took, the size of your home office, any part-time jobs or side works you picked up etc. All these situations may have an impact on your final income tax filing and therefore, only an expert can help you sort it out.
This was only a brief answer to the question how can tax lawyer help me. There are many other reasons why you should hire a tax lawyer and what he can do for you. The only important thing is to realize when you need one.
If you need help with any tax problem, please call us at 407-502-2400, or email us at [email protected].