Once you have received a letter from the Internal Revenue Service or the IRS, it is advisable that you consult an attorney who is familiar with the tax laws applicable to your state as well as the federal tax laws. The tax attorney will be responsible for contacting the IRS, respond to the IRS tax audit, and negotiate as well as less the penalties that might have been imposed. The following are a few useful tips on how to find such an attorney.
If you have a personal lawyer for all your basic legal needs, try asking him for referrals. He might know an attorney whose field of practice is taxation. You can also ask the person who prepares your tax returns or your certified public accountant or CPA. Although these people are well versed in the field of taxation, they may lack the experience in dealing with the IRS most especially in presenting your case before the auditing body or the tax courts.
If you have a tax attorney in mind already, make sure that he is not only a member of the American Bar Association and the state bar, but has also had advanced taxation law training such as a Master of Law. There are states that only require a tax attorney who is a graduate of Master of Law to appear before the IRS on the client’s behalf. It will also benefit you if your tax attorney is also a CPA.
Before retaining one tax attorney, consult a number of them first. Ask for references in order to ensure that they have had the training and experience in this field of law.
A tax attorney who also specializes in income taxation will be a plus. He is someone who likes to take time in reviewing tax information and has the ability to explain to the IRS tax audit about the misunderstandings made in your case. He, however, should be willing to work with your financial planner or your accountant.
Lastly, discuss the attorney’s fees. Should all of them prove to be promising, this information will be the one that will help you make the decision. Some lawyers charge by the hour, while others have flat rates. Whatever their rates are, ask for a schedule of payment plans, as well as other costs that might not be included in their professional fees. If you cannot afford to hire one, there are a lot of legal aid clinics all over the country.