Are you one of the 8 million+ taxpayers with an IRS problem? Almost every time, you are better off dealing with the IRS issue sooner, rather than later. Ignoring, stalling, burying your head in the sand, will simply cause the tax debt to grow to the point of a 4-alarm fire. If you find yourself on the IRS’ mailing list, it may be time to seek the help for a tax resolution specialist. Let’s talk about how to find a good one!
Here are 8 areas to consider when evaluating a Tax Resolution Specialist.
In order to represent you before the IRS the specialist must be:
- Certified Public Accountant (CPA), or
- Lawyer, or
- Enrolled Agent (EA)
So the first question to ask the person on the other line is, “What designation do you hold?” If you’re talking to a “Specialist” that isn’t one of these three (CPA, Lawyer, EA), you are probably talking to a sales person who’s job is not to solve your IRS problem, but to make a sale.
2. Public Proof
The internet provides a variety of ways to check on a firm’s performance. Search Review sites, Better Business Bureau, and Social Media. The real-life experiences of others will give you a great idea of what to expect.
3. Who will handle my case?
Tax resolution is complicated, and requires a full understand of your specific situation. Will one person handle your case from start-to-finish? Or does the firm have a revolving door of employees leaving you with someone new re-learn your case every couple of months?
It is very easy to start a “Tax Resolution” company. But the real value is the experience and knowledge of the actual person who will be working on YOUR case.
For many things in life, “you get what you pay for”. But Tax Resolution can be an exception. Many companies charge a large, all-elusive fee upfront. The problem with this method is that the fee is usually determined by the sales person who may be more interested in making his boat payment than solving your IRS problem. To truly understand the work required to solve your SPECIFIC tax problem a qualified specialist needs to thoroughly review your IRS transcripts, current financial situation and understand your needs/goals. Without this knowledge, pricing the entire case is a shot in the dark.
Tax problems come in many shapes and sizes. Tax solutions come in just as many. Be sure to find a firm that specializes in TAX RESOLUTION with both the IRS and State taxing authorities. We live under a very complicated system and knowing the rules makes all the difference.
One size does NOT fit all in tax problem solving. When looking for an expert, pay careful attention to how much emphasis is given to understanding your situation. If you are being asked detailed questions early in the process, take that as a good sign.
8. Promises and Guarantees
Be very leery of firms promising you the moon, (“Pennies on the dollar”) or making guarantees about what they will get the IRS to agree to. Avoid hiring tax resolution specialists who use this type of marketing.
Use these measures to check each Tax Representative you consider. The last thing you want to do is make your tax problem worse by hiring the wrong Tax Pro.