Hialeah Tax Lawyer Providing Representation and Advice for Clients With Tax Problems in Florida
Hitting a rough patch in life and falling behind on your tax obligations is something that can happen to anyone. However, it is important to understand that taking no action to correct the issue only makes things worse with the IRS, potentially increasing your tax debt every month it goes unpaid. Learn how a tax attorney can help you fix your situation with the IRS and give you a chance for a fresh start.
What Should I Do if I Have Not Filed a Tax Return in a While?
It is common for some clients to not file a tax return one year for many reasons, and then the following year, they fail to file their tax return yet again because now they are afraid of the consequences of not having filed the previous year. While this happens often, it is a costly mistake because willful failure to file your tax return could be considered a federal crime.
The problem is that you are required to file your tax return even if you don’t expect to have to pay any taxes. If you’ve had enough gross income, you still need to file. Unfiled tax returns can snowball into an expensive issue for the taxpayer, as the IRS can add penalties and interest to any tax balance you may have pending. The good news is that when you decide to voluntarily fix the situation with the IRS and file your past-due tax returns as a part of a voluntary disclosure (before getting a notice from the IRS), the IRS is usually willing to work things out without filing criminal charges.
What this means for you is that unfiled tax returns could turn into a major problem unless you take action now and file your past-due tax returns as soon as possible. Our firm can assist you with the process of preparing and filing past-due tax returns and negotiating with the IRS to get you back on the right track.
Can a Tax Attorney Help Me Negotiate My Tax Debt?
An experienced tax attorney can make all the difference in helping you negotiate your tax debt with the IRS. If you have unpaid taxes, it is important to understand that the IRS will continue adding interest to your unpaid balance until it is paid in full. This is why it may be in your best interest to pay off as much of your balance as you can.
On the other hand, your tax attorney may be able to negotiate with the IRS to try and get your penalties reduced or eliminated altogether in certain cases. Eligible taxpayers may qualify for penalty abatement under specific circumstances, potentially saving thousands of dollars and resolving their tax debt sooner. The Law Office of Ray Haselman will work with you to analyze your situation and discuss with you whether penalty abatement is a feasible option for your case.
What Happens If I Can’t Pay My Tax Debt?
We understand that some clients believe they may not be able to afford to pay their taxes. In this case, you have a few options our firm could help you with. For example, if you can prove that your monthly expenses are higher than your monthly income, you could potentially qualify for Currently Non-Collectible Status. This stops the IRS from pursuing collection actions against you but does not make your tax balance go away.
Alternatively, we may be able to negotiate an installment plan, allowing you to pay off your debt by making manageable monthly payments for several months or years. This option may not eliminate interest and penalties, which will continue to accumulate. Some clients may even qualify for a program called Offer In Compromise, which allows you to request the IRS to accept a lump sum payment that is often equal to much less than the amount you originally owe in taxes.
The Offer In Compromise program may give taxpayers a chance to settle with the IRS for less than what they owe. However, in order for your offer to be properly prepared, submitted, and accepted, you need to be ready to submit a significant amount of financial information documenting your assets, liabilities, how much income you currently have every month, and your monthly expenses, and getting the help of a tax attorney for this process is extremely important. If your Offer In Compromise is accepted, the IRS will have to release any tax liens that may have been assessed against your assets, and can no longer levy any more assets while your Offer In Compromise is pending.
Can I Handle My Tax Problem by Myself or Should I Hire Someone?
You have the right to represent yourself and handle your tax problem directly with the IRS, but this may not be the best approach, especially if your tax issue is more complex. Dealing with the IRS requires unlimited time, patience, and persistence and can prove to be difficult for individuals who are not familiar with how the IRS operates.
You also have the right to be represented by an experienced IRS tax attorney. Once the IRS is notified that you are being represented by a tax lawyer such as Attorney Ray Haselman, they must direct all communications to your attorney and can no longer contact you directly – meaning you can be relieved of the stress of dealing with the IRS and let your attorney handle it all on your behalf. In addition, your attorney has the skills and tax law knowledge to help you reach a favorable outcome with the IRS as quickly as possible, avoiding delays and potentially costly mistakes.
The Law Office of Ray Haselman serves clients in Hialeah, FL, Fort Lauderdale, and surrounding areas. If you have a tax problem, reach out to our office by calling 786-522-0410 to learn your options.