Tax attorneys can assist you in resolving a tax dispute or in preventing one. Knowing what to search for will help you find the best lawyer for your requirements. Tax lawyers are legal experts who assist with tax preparation and represent clients before the IRS. They are among the top resources for assistance with tax issues. Tax filing is a difficult process, and even if you complete your tax returns correctly, you can still be involved in a dispute with the IRS. Using a tax attorney’s assistance in situations like this is the wisest course of action.
It might be difficult to find a competent tax lawyer to manage your case when you don’t know where to go. Find out when it’s best to hire a tax attorney and how to pick one who will be a great fit for your needs. A capable tax lawyer will be able to argue your case before the IRS and assist you in negotiating compensation with the government. A tax attorney can help you simplify your taxes and accounts if you’re establishing a business or even if your tax situation is confusing, in addition to assisting you if the IRS is looking into you.
We’ve put up a list of seven questions to ask a tax lawyer to make sure the services they give meet your needs. By asking these questions, you can lower the high tension that comes with choosing a lawyer and prevent making rash judgments.
Why Are Tax Lawyers Necessary?
Tax attorneys are in the best position to assist you in resolving the difficult, technical, and legal challenges related to your tax status because they are attorneys who focus on the intricate and complex field of tax law.
However, you’ll need to do some due diligence before hiring a tax lawyer. Remember, sometimes even the best of the best can make blunders while dealing with unresolved tax cases; it can be stressful. Any error, no matter how minor, has the potential to destroy your reputation. Therefore, you should not only hire a qualified tax lawyer to do the work for you but also be careful while choosing one.
When to Consult a Tax Lawyer
Tax-related problems can be unpleasant, and while you can fix some issues on your own in some circumstances, it’s usually advisable to seek professional assistance in others. In the case of complex tax concerns, it is important to think about employing a tax attorney. A tax lawyer is a wise choice if you require legal representation, for instance, to challenge a tax audit.
Other situations where consulting with a tax lawyer is advised include:
- If the IRS has filed criminal charges against you for actions such as committing tax fraud, etc.
- If you require someone to speak on your behalf when speaking with the IRS
- When you wish to bargain for tax relief or contest taxes
- When you intend to launch a business
- If you require assistance with estate planning
7 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Tax Lawyer
1. Do you have experience working with the IRS and with tax law?
It’s crucial to have a tax attorney with proper tax knowledge when hiring a lawyer to assist you with tax issues. You want a representative at your side who is knowledgeable about the ins and outs of tax law and how to apply it to your case when communicating with the court or the IRS. A skilled tax lawyer can represent you in tax court cases and can vigorously bargain with the IRS on your behalf.
Be sure to question your tax lawyer about:
- How long have they been working?
- How frequently do they attend tax court?
- If they are aware of all the most recent tax regulations
- If they previously worked as an accountant
With a degree in accounting, your tax attorney will be more knowledgeable about bookkeeping procedures, how your accounting may be contributing to your tax issues, and how to fix them. Your tax lawyer can more effectively defend and prepare your tax return if they have accounting skills.
2. Do you hold a state bar admission? What are your qualifications?
This is the second most important inquiry you should make to a tax lawyer. Always enquire about and demand proof of the credentials of any prospective tax attorney. Your lawyer should hold a Master of Law degree at the very least and be admitted to practice law by the state bar in your state. Remember that while less experienced attorneys will charge less up front, employing them may end up costing you more as your legal tax case gets prolonged. If you’re a member of a local business association, ask for recommendations there. You may also read online reviews to learn more about them. There are public directories of tax lawyers who have enrolled with associations like the Tax Law Association. Utilize these resources to your advantage and find out everything you need to know.
3. Have you ever dealt with a situation like this?
A tax lawyer might have knowledge in the area you’re looking for. However, there may be a chance that they have never dealt with a situation like yours. Before selecting a tax lawyer, you should always inquire about their experience with cases similar to yours. If they haven’t, you must carefully assess whether or not you want to use their services.
4. Have there been any complaints or legal actions against you?
You must be certain that the tax attorney you choose is trustworthy. So don’t be afraid to ask if they have ever been the target of a lawsuit while operating their business. A lawsuit brought against an attorney does not necessarily imply that they are dishonest. However, it is always worthwhile to check.
5. Do you return calls or emails quickly?
For their clients, a reputable tax attorney should be simple to contact via phone or email. You don’t want to hire a lawyer who is difficult to get a hold of, do you? A tax lawyer should make sure to send you an email to let you know if they are having trouble answering your calls.
6. How will you maintain my information and who will do the work?
You will be needing updates, particularly if you are having issues with tax debt. The tax attorney should be able to keep you abreast of the details and complexities of the case. You must be clear on how they will get in touch with you, and who in their office will oversee communications. It’s acceptable for a paralegal or administrator to undertake some of the fundamental tasks, but be wary of companies that bill you for an attorney’s time before having someone else handle your case.
7. Do you charge a flat rate or an hourly?
Finally, ask them if their rates are set or determined by the quantity of work they do. Clarity regarding payment will guarantee good trust between the parties and eliminate any chance of misunderstanding between you and the lawyer.
Lawyers that specialize in tax planning assist corporations and high-net-worth individuals in structuring their financial affairs to reduce their tax liabilities and prevent tax audits. They might seek to settle your tax bill or other matters with a government agency, offer advice on how to handle an audit, represent you in court, and more. Additionally, tax lawyers also manage communication with the government on your behalf.