While the IRS only audited 3.8 out of 1000 tax returns last year, plenty of folks may benefit from hiring a tax attorney to help minimize tax obligations, sorting out IRS notices, or planning an estate. In most cases, hiring a tax attorney costs between $200 and $600 an hour, depending on the services you need. Some attorneys charge by the hour, and some charge a flat fee, but most tax resolutions cost about $4,000.
What Do Tax Attorneys Do?
Tax attorneys specialize in tax law and provide both legal advice and representations to individuals, businesses, and organizations. The primary goal of a tax lawyer is to help their client navigate the complexities of current tax law as well as the constantly evolving regulations related to individual and business tax obligations.
If your goal is to minimize your tax liability while ensuring you’re complying with all applicable regulations and laws, a tax attorney may be a sound investment. Here are some specific tasks and responsibilities often performed by tax attorneys:
Tax planning, advice, and education
Tax attorneys assist clients in developing effective tax strategies to minimize their tax obligations legally. They analyze clients' financial situations and advise on the best methods for structuring transactions, investments, and business operations to optimize tax benefits.
Also, tax attorneys provide clients with ongoing advice and counsel to address issues or concerns. They interpret complex tax laws, provide guidance on potential tax consequences of specific transactions or investments, and offer strategic recommendations to minimize tax risks.
Tax attorneys ensure their clients fully comply with applicable tax laws and regulations. They help prepare and review tax returns, ensuring accuracy and adherence to legal requirements. They also assist clients in responding to tax audits, investigations, and inquiries from tax authorities.
Tax dispute resolution
Tax attorneys represent clients in disputes with tax authorities, such as the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in the United States or other tax agencies globally. They handle negotiations, appeals, and litigation processes on behalf of clients. Their goal is to resolve tax disputes favorably for their clients. The IRS rarely forgives tax debts, but a tax attorney may help you determine if you qualify for an offer in compromise.
Estate planning and gift planning
Tax attorneys advise clients on estate planning and help structure their assets and wealth transfers in a tax-efficient manner. They assist in creating wills, trusts, and other estate planning documents, taking into account applicable estate and gift tax laws.
Help with international taxation
For clients involved in international business or with foreign tax obligations, tax attorneys navigate the complexities of international tax laws, treaties, and regulations. They provide guidance on cross-border transactions, transfer pricing, foreign tax credits, and other international tax matters.
How Much Does a Tax Lawyer Cost?
As mentioned above, the cost of a tax lawyer depends on the complexity of the services needed. So, if you have a fairly simple project for your attorney, such as a session on tax planning for an individual with a simple tax return, you’ll pay about $200 an hour. However, if your case is more complicated, you may pay more. Here are a few things that may affect how much your tax attorney costs:
Complexity, time, and effort
The complexity of your tax matter is a significant factor in determining the cost. More complex cases involving intricate tax issues, multiple jurisdictions, or high-stakes disputes tend to require extensive research, analysis, and legal work, which can result in higher fees. Additionally, if your case involves comprehensive document review, analysis, negotiations, or court representation, it will require more work hours, which can increase the fees.
Attorney’s experience and reputation
The tax attorney’s experience, expertise, and reputation can affect the cost. Highly experienced and well-regarded tax attorneys often command higher fees due to their specialized knowledge and track record of success.
Attorney’s billing structure
Although it may seem tedious, it is important to note that the hourly rates charged by attorneys can differ based on their level of experience and the intricacy of the case. Flat fees are usually set for specific services. Understanding and discussing the billing structure with the attorney will help you estimate the potential costs.
The geographic location where the tax attorney practices can influence the fees. Attorneys in larger cities or areas with a higher cost of living generally charge higher rates compared to those in smaller towns or less expensive regions.
In complex cases, tax attorneys may need to collaborate with other professionals, such as accountants, financial advisors, or expert witnesses. The involvement of additional professionals can contribute to the overall cost of legal services.
If your tax matter necessitates immediate attention or if there are tight deadlines involved, it may affect the fees charged by the tax attorney. Urgent cases often require the attorney to prioritize your matter and allocate resources accordingly, potentially resulting in higher costs.
How To Find a Tax Attorney For Your Case
Determine the specific tax issue you need assistance with. It could be tax planning, IRS audits, tax litigation, international taxation, or any other tax-related matter. Understanding your needs will help you find an attorney with relevant expertise. Then, you can use our directory to find top-rated attorneys in your area.
If you don’t have time to call around, use our new concierge service. One of our team members will reach out to tax attorneys in your area and find one available for you without you doing any legwork!
Step into the world of Expertise.com, your go-to hub for credible insights. We don't take accuracy lightly around here. Our squad of expert reviewers, each a maestro in their field, has given the green light to every single article you'll find. From rigorous fact-checking to meticulous evaluations of service providers, we've got it all covered. So feel free to dive in and explore. The information you'll uncover has been stamped with the seal of approval by our top-notch experts.