Do I Need a CPA or Tax Attorney?
If the IRS is coming after you for back taxes, interest, or penalties, you may be wondering whether you need a tax attorney or CPA. While both professionals can represent you in IRS tax disputes, the decision of which professional to hire can hinge on the status of your IRS collections. If you need to amend previous tax returns to resolve your IRS tax debt, a CPA may be the right professional. However, if you are facing IRS collections for reasons other than an accounting error, a tax attorney may be the best professional to contact.
A CPA is a certified public accountant licensed by a state. In California, to become a CPA one must pass the Uniform CPA Exam, obtain a bachelor’s degree, fulfill accounting educational requirements, and obtain one year of general accounting experience supervised by a licensed CPA.
CPA’s are experts in accounting. When your tax liability requires amended tax returns, documentation of expenses, or substantiation, a CPA may be the right professional to call. Likewise, EA’s (enrolled agents) can also help you amend returns and provide accounting assistance.
In summary, when you need assistance with accounting to resolve a tax dispute with the IRS, a CPA is better equipped than many tax attorneys to help you.
When your tax dispute rests in the application of tax law to facts or you require assistance with tax debt relief, a tax attorney may the professional to call. A tax attorney is licensed by a state to practice law and has fulfilled the educational requirements to become an attorney. Many licensed attorneys practice tax law, but some hold the designation of a certified specialist in taxation law.
One thing that sets tax attorneys apart from CPA’s is that only tax attorneys can represent you in U.S. federal court.
What Does A Tax Attorney Do?
Some individuals and businesses know that they need help getting out of tax debt, but they don’t know exactly what tax attorneys do. Tax attorneys settle back taxes, help clients in IRS collections, apply for offers in compromise, and otherwise help clients resolve tax debt. Some tax attorneys are more transactional meaning that they help clients navigate the tax consequences of commercial transactions and business formation.
If you owe the IRS or the State of California at least $10,000, call Sacramento Law Group LLP for a free tax consultation. Our Sacramento tax lawyer can help you resolve tax debt and get out of IRS collections. To learn more call our office at (916) 299-9913 Monday through Friday.