7 Things to Look for When Hiring a Tax Lawyer
Having a tax issue can be daunting. So can the task of having to find a tax attorney qualified enough to take on your tax matter. Here is a list of the top things to look for when hiring a tax lawyer.
1.) Talk Directly to an attorney before signing anything
These days, people will do anything to make money, including ripping off innocent, vulnerable people such as yourself and these blood-thirsty sharks can often be hard to spot. But there are signs. One common practice among these companies is using sales people to get clients to sign on the dotted line and hand over their hard-earned money without the client ever getting a chance to speak to an attorney. What’s worse is these sales people will say just about anything to get you to sign. They will make outlandish promises about things they know nothing about. Attorneys, on the other hand, are legally bound by rules of ethics set forward by the state bar to follow certain guidelines and ethical practices. If the person you are speaking with is not an attorney ask to speak to one immediately and don’t let them pressure you or derail you from this. Don’t let a sales person tell you what an attorney can do. You can google “tax debt resolution scams” to read more about these morally bankrupt companies.
2.) Their firm or practice deals only with tax issues
If you had an issue with your heart, you would see a specialist like a cardiologist as opposed to a regular run-of-the-mill General Practitioner. Why? Because the cardiologist has dedicated his life to one specific organ meaning he knows more about it than most other doctors. It is the same thing with attorneys. When it comes to resolving a tax matter, you want to see a tax attorney as opposed to just a regular attorney. You don’t want a “jack-of-all-trades/master-of-none” kind of lawyer fighting for you. You want that “master-of-his-domain” attorney in your corner.
3.) They have their LLM in addition to their J.D
An LL.M is also known as Master of Laws is a Masters Degree in, you guessed it, Tax Law. Professionals with this degree not only know the ins and outs of the law in general. But they also know the intricacies of the constantly evolving tax code. In fact, they often know more than the IRS themselves.
4.) They have knowledge and experience with your specific problem
Just as you would likely see a cardiologist for your heart issue, you would probably want one who is very familiar with your specific condition as opposed to a cardiologist who maybe deals with different conditions. Same goes for tax attorneys. While a regular tax attorney with an LLM should suffice, you should also do some research and look for one with knowledge and expertise with your matter. By “research” I mean just question them during the consultation. Get a feel for how confident they feel about your case and how knowledgeable they seem. Trust me. You’ll be able to tell who knows their stuff and who doesn’t by asking some basic questions.
When dealing with a sensitive issue such as this, you don’t want to put the fate of your financial future in just anyone’s hands. So as important as it is for your tax lawyer to be knowledgeable and experienced with your matter, you should also feel comfortable and confident with them. He or she should make you feel good about your case’s outcome. You hired a tax attorney because you were worried and didn’t know where else to turn. If you picked the right one then you should feel at ease when speaking to them.
Feeling at ease with your lawyer means absolutely nothing if he is not available to you. He should be in constant contact with you requesting documents, updating you on your case, and responding to your contact attempts in a timely manner. If not, then that is a red flag right there.
If this is your first time contacting an attorney you’re like a babe in the woods. You probably have no idea where to look for a good one. Luckily, there is no better referral than client reviews and testimonials. So, if you feel comfortable doing so, ask around. Ask your friends, your family, etc. if they know of any good tax attorneys. If you don’t want to do that or if they don’t know anyone, check online. Any tax attorney worth his salt will have reviews and testimonials from previous clients. You can check out their personal company web page for these or check out Google reviews, yelp, their Facebook company page, avvo.com (a site for lawyers and people looking for legal services), etc.
Just because your tax matter can be stressful, doesn’t mean finding a tax attorney should be. And hopefully, with these tips, the task will seem less intimidating. If you would like to speak to an experienced tax attorney who knows the ins and outs of the tax laws and who will give you FREE, honest, no-obligation legal advice, contact Ayar Law today at 248.262.3400