While it is true that a taxpayer is permitted to handle their IRS tax problems or state problems on their own, should they? Much like you can change the oil in your car or remodel your kitchen yourself, you can attempt to resolve your tax liabilities on your own. But, do you really want to spend all that time learning how to do it properly? Do you even have the time to do it? What if you make a mistake? What if you miss out on the best possible outcome because you simply didn’t know how to navigate the process? This is one of the benefits of hiring a licensed professional specialized in tax resolution matters. You stand the best chance of getting the best resolution possible the first time.

In my professional experience, the following are the top 5 reasons to hire a tax resolution representative:

    I have had countless experiences with IRS agents, whether they are with collections, audits, or any other unit of the IRS, that have been incorrect in their understanding of the IRS rules. I have had to correct them on procedural protocol, financial calculations, and on legal considerations. They are human and they CAN and WILL make mistakes. Not all agents of the IRS have been working there for “years.” You may encounter a new agent that is just in training, or simply doesn’t have the extensive knowledge of the issue you’re trying to resolve because they haven’t reached that milestone in their training yet. It’s very common to receive incorrect information that, if not verified, you will never know was wrong. If you spoke to the IRS as many times as we have, you would be shocked at how common a problem this is. Unless you want to spend countless hours researching the tax codes, regulations, or publications, you are better off with a knowledgeable tax resolution professional that can stay clear amidst the confusion.
    If you think that your cousin Shirley who’s worked for Lawyer X and Accounting Firm Y is going to help you deal with this, think again! You have to have the right attorney and tax representative that is SPECIALIZED in the the field of solving tax problems to get you in a better position. Don’t count on the generalized knowledge of others if they cannot vouch for experience in solving the problem that you have. Tax resolution is its own area of law, it is different than simple bookkeeping or accounting tasks. We specialize in preparing financial materials anticipating the way revenue agencies review them, and in negotiating and speaking to the IRS & states to resolve tax problems. It’s not just about filling out forms and submitting them to the IRS or State, it is also knowing how those forms will be interpreted and used by the agencies. Remember, the IRS & state are looking out for what is in THEIR best interest in successfully collecting all tax owed. Your tax resolution advocate is looking out for YOUR best interest in arguing that you should pay what you can afford.
    If you’ve tried to explain your issue to the IRS or State and feel as if you’re speaking to the DMV, then you are not alone. I always abide by this saying, “if you want the right answers, ask the right questions.” It is very powerful. We’ve worked with clients that tried to solve their problems themselves only to deal with it for months because they were not able to properly communicate what they were after with the countless agents that they’ve spoken to at the IRS or state. We regularly take such cases and solve the problem in less than a fraction of the time it took them! The IRS is so large that they have many departments, units, and call centers around the nation, making it very difficult to navigate where your case should be in the pipeline. The states function in the same way. With so many departments and separate specialized field units, the left hand may not always know what the right hand is doing, and so you end up confused and defeated. We know who to talk to and how to speak to government entities to get the results you’re after.
    Taking a tiny break from work to answer a phone call from an IRS or state agent can be not only distracting, but unnerving. Do you want to go back to your workspace feeling depressed and nervous causing you to loose focus on the day’s work ahead? The agent might be calling you to send them a certain document that you already presented to them for the 10th time! Or, they want you to explain to them a specific figure that appears on your paycheck or bank account statement, which you don’t have in front of you at the moment so you just guess what it could possibly be. Or, they may tell you that they’ve figured out that you have the ability to pay a ridiculous amount for a payment plan and you have no idea how they came up with THAT figure. You end up spending more time tuning in to the details of your tax problem and less time focusing on making the money to pay it. If you really value your time and your sanity, then think of investing in the right representative to give you that peace of mind that you need and deserve.
    As a tax professional in the field of solving tax problems, I can honestly say that I take pride in working with the Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) at the IRS when I need to “expedite” a certain issue. The Taxpayer Advocate Service is a “free” service, it is paid by taxpayer’s dollars and it is there to help taxpayers (and their representatives) with tax issues. Consider them sort of your ‘public defender.’ It has been my experience in dealing with TAS that there may be times when they cannot solve your problem because they don’t put their heart in it. I have opened TAS cases for my clients and explained the tax problem, only to be given a pessimistic outlook to the solution I seek. I’ve heard everything from “that isn’t going to work” “You’re going to have to start all over again” to “your client is just going to have to deal with it.” Really? No, I don’t think so. As soon as I provide them with the regulations and tax codes needed to prove the case should be pushed through the pipeline, the job gets DONE. I tend to think of them as my springboard to the resolution I am after. When you hire a tax resolution professional, you are hiring someone to seek the best solution for you. They should take ALL reasonable measures to get you in a better position than you started with. TAS is great, but they don’t have enough of a drive, like a hired tax professional, to push it to the limit. The team at The Law Office of Elizabeth Gonsalves has their names riding on every case we do. If we know there is a way, we’ll get there!