What is a Tax Attorney?
Tax law is a broad area of the law that applies to many different issues. Thus, it follows that tax attorneys may handle matters that range from corporate taxes on a business to tax evasion lawsuits.
In general, however, a tax attorney is a legal expert who has strong knowledge of the Federal Tax Code and other relevant tax laws. They are typically hired to advise businesses, individuals, and/or government agencies about tax requirements and to make sure that they are in compliance with the necessary tax laws.
If you have questions about specific tax law requirements or need help resolving a tax law dispute, you should contact a local tax attorney as soon as possible. Delaying the task of seeking legal counsel can hurt your chances of settling a tax matter quickly and may lead to serious consequences. Additionally, the longer you wait to fix certain tax issues, the higher amount of interest and/or penalties you may have to pay on your taxes.
What are a Tax Attorney’s Duties and Services?
As mentioned, tax law applies to various matters. The most crucial part of a tax attorney’s job involves monitoring tax laws and being aware of any changes made to them. This is because tax attorneys are often hired to provide detailed tax advice and to explain how such changes can affect their clients.
Some other duties and services that tax attorneys provide include:
- Interpreting tax laws and applying them to specific tax questions or issues;
- Appearing in court on behalf of a client or in front of administrative tax authorities;
- Negotiating with those tax authorities on behalf of a client (e.g., the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”));
- Specializing in certain areas of tax law (e.g., international tax law, business tax law, etc.);
- Understanding and explaining accounting and finance principles; and/or
- Maintaining tax records and information for their clients.
What are Some Common Tax Law Issues?
Tax law issues can arise for many reasons. One of the most common litigated tax issues involves failing to file taxes on time and failing to pay the fines associated with late tax filings.
An individual faced with such matters should strongly consider hiring a tax attorney to resolve their issue. Oftentimes, a tax lawyer can identify exceptions to these cases where tax penalties should not be imposed and can argue to eliminate them in court or negotiate a deal with the IRS.
Another tax law issue that comes up frequently is failing to keep copies of tax returns. Not only do individuals and entities typically need to provide their tax return from the previous year when filing taxes, but these records also serve as evidence that taxes were in fact filed and can be referenced in the event that a tax return needs to be amended. Old tax returns can also be useful during IRS audits, tax fraud investigations, and tax disputes that end up in court.
As discussed above, one of the main reasons that businesses and individuals hire tax attorneys is to maintain and store records of their tax returns. Tax attorneys hired for this purpose will also keep financial documents related to those records, such as receipts or titles to property. These records come in handy when dealing with the final issue, business deductions.
Businesses that fail to keep good records of their expenses and statements related to tax deductions can be penalized or sued by the IRS. Businesses may also be fined or can face a lawsuit when they commingle funds with personal expenses and then try to deduct it on their tax returns. A tax attorney can make sure that these records are kept in good condition and can defend businesses against such lawsuits and penalties.
Should You Hire a Tax Lawyer?
Tax law issues can be exceptionally difficult to navigate without the help of a tax lawyer. Tax law in general is a very complex area of the law that only becomes more complicated when faced with narrower tax issues like property taxes or international tax laws. In addition, the Federal Tax Code gets amended every year, which in turn, has a trickle-down effect on both state and local tax laws.
Thus, if you have any questions about tax laws or are involved in a tax dispute, it is strongly recommended that you hire a local tax lawyer. Your lawyer can answer any questions you may have about taxes and can assist in resolving your tax issues. Your lawyer can also help you file any necessary paperwork and review your tax documents to make sure that you are compliant with the relevant laws.
If you need help finding a tax lawyer, begin by conducting a quick search for a “tax lawyer near me” or a “tax attorney near me.” From those results, you should look for the type of tax lawyer who handles matters that closely resemble your issue. For instance, if you have avoided paying your income taxes for a long period of time, you should consult a local income tax lawyer. The faster you hire a lawyer, the faster you can begin resolving your tax issue.