Author Box
Articles Categories
All Categories
Articles Resources

Tax Attorney or CPA? Who to Hire Depends on What Kind of Tax Help You Need

July 02, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 139

When you need tax return or tax resolution services, you might not be sure who to hire. Tax attorneys and CPAs can both offer experienced, knowledgeable tax help for individuals and corporate clients--and even in a small city, multiple firms might be vying for your business. To make the right choice, take into account each tax professional's training and what kind of IRS assistance you actually need.

Tax Return Preparation

Most accounting firms offer tax preparation services. A CPA can go through your financial records and complete the tax return with you. (An enrolled agent can also help with tax return preparation.) If your return is flagged for any reason, a CPA can go through the return looking for errors and act as your advocate with the Internal Revenue Service. While some tax attorneys offer tax return preparation, many don't--and if they do, the service will often be much more expensive than paying a CPA or enrolled agent. Unless you suspect you need legal expertise to file your tax return, or you have a complex corporate return, you probably don't need the specialized knowledge of a tax attorney for tax preparation.

Tax Resolution Services

If you're struggling with back taxes and need tax relief, you can hire either a CPA or a tax attorney to deal with the IRS on your behalf. Both accountants, who are trained in financial matters, and tax lawyers, who are trained in the law, can negotiate tax settlements such as offers in compromise, penalty abatement, and installment agreements. CPAs and tax attorneys can also both represent you if you're being subjected to an IRS audit, though a CPA firm might be better equipped to go through your records penny by penny and receipt by receipt in search of errors and red flags that might be causing the audit.

Legal Advice and Representation

While both a CPA and a tax attorney can represent you in dealings with the IRS, only licensed attorneys can represent you in court, should you need it. A tax lawyer's detailed knowledge of city, state, and federal tax codes can help you if you find yourself in legal trouble or needing legal advice, as well as needing IRS assistance. This may be especially helpful for corporate clients, who will need to ensure the legality of major business decisions and actions. Additionally, when you hire a tax attorney, you have the benefit of attorney-client privilege; anything you discuss with your lawyer will be confidential.

Money Management Advice

In addition to providing tax help, a CPA can help you with an array of financial matters. He might help you create a budget for next year's taxes, upcoming expenses, or desired purchases. He may be able to advise you regarding investments and financial trends. He can go through individual or business financial records looking for discrepancies. While a tax attorney may be able to do some or all of these tasks, again the services of a lawyer will often cost more.

What's the bottom line? Do your research before hiring any tax professional. Don't trust your financial future to someone who isn't the right fit for the job. Visit various firms' Web sites and look them up online to find past client reviews. And weigh what services you need with how much you're willing and able to pay for them. The right tax attorney or CPA can mean the difference between a stressful, upsetting tax experience and one that's smooth and hassle-free.

Kelly Robertson is a money management expert and a senior Internet marketing strategist at Prospect Genius, a leader in local online advertising.

Source: EzineArticles
Was this Helpful ?

Rate this Article

Article Tags:

Irs Back Taxes


Tax Attorneys


Irs Tax Settlement


Tax Resolution Services

The 3 Month Payday Loans is most suitable options for the people who do not possess assets. There are a variety of loan options for the people who are willing to pledge assets against the cash

By: Cameron white l Finance > Personal Finance l July 09, 2013 lViews: 560

For many people, bankruptcy can make their world fall apart. The apparent loss of reputation coupled with the inability to take financial decisions can deter anyone from thinking clearly. But all is

By: noragwilt l Finance > Bankruptcy Lawyers l November 18, 2012 lViews: 303

If you are availing payday loans with monthly payments, it is easy for you to obtain quick money from online lending companies.By getting the best deals of loan, you can save money in terms of

By: Malen Cheks l Finance > Loans l November 16, 2012 lViews: 288

Loans online have become the popular source of income and people can make smart decision of taking it.Now, don’t go anywhere and sit in your home silently. Such deals would bring you money without

By: Marsh Jone l Finance > Loans l November 13, 2012 lViews: 288

Loans for the unemployed would let you feel comfortable with your unstable conditions due to jobless period.If you compare the rates of a few lenders, you would definitely get the suitable lender to

By: kelse roy l Finance > Loans l November 13, 2012 lViews: 467

By taking cash advance for bad credit, it is easy for you to improve your credit status. This loan is useful to relieve financial stress. This loan is totally free from credit verification and

By: Honard Nork l Finance > Loans l November 09, 2012 lViews: 300

Tax attorneys, CPAs, and enrolled agents are all qualified to file tax returns and provide assistance with tax resolution. So how can you choose the tax pro who's right for you?

By: Oswald Hermitl Finance > Taxes Reliefl July 03, 2012 lViews: 196

Truckers nowadays have a lot more to worry about than heavy traffic and the high cost of fuel. Whether you're an owner operator, an independent contractor, or a commercial company driver, you should

By: Maria Allenl Finance > Taxes Reliefl June 28, 2012 lViews: 144

Owing back taxes to the state or federal tax authority is a hassle in and of itself. However, when you add heavy late fees and other tax penalties into the mix, you can be left an even bigger mess

By: Kelly R Robertsonl Finance > Taxes Reliefl June 26, 2012 lViews: 147

If you need tax help, there are several different routes you can take. One way is to tackle the problem yourself, which might save you a few dollars in the short term. In the long term, however,

By: Mark R Randalll Finance > Taxes Reliefl June 22, 2012 lViews: 193

The Disability Tax Credit may be one of the best ways to get income tax money back from the government - and it is also one of the least aptly named of the tax credits available in Canada. While most

By: Colleen A Hughesl Finance > Taxes Reliefl May 30, 2012 lViews: 168

For Irish people who chose to retire abroad, they now have the option to avoid the Irish pension levy, avoid Irish income tax, capital gains tax and make tax savings upon death with regards to your

By: Richard D Malpassl Finance > Taxes Reliefl May 28, 2012 lViews: 235

Owing back taxes to the state or federal tax authority is a hassle in and of itself. However, when you add heavy late fees and other tax penalties into the mix, you can be left an even bigger mess

By: Kelly R Robertsonl Finance > Taxes Reliefl June 26, 2012 lViews: 147

Discuss this Article

comments powered by Disqus