San Francisco Tax Attorney: IRS Audit & Litigation Representation
We represent you in all aspects of tax litigation in federal and California courts.
Tax Fraud and Tax Crimes
The Criminal Investigation Division is a separate branch of the IRS dedicated to investigating potential tax crimes. The consequences of a criminal investigation by the IRS or state tax representatives is potentially very serious, leading to significant jail time.
Tax and related crimes include:
- Tax Evasion
- Evasion of Payment of Taxes
- Filing a False Return
- Failure to Supply Information to the IRS
- Submitting False Documents
- Fraudulent Failure to Collect Taxes
- Fraudulent Failure to Pay Over Collected Taxes
- Fraudulent Failure to File a Return
- Money Laundering
- Bank Fraud
- Mail Fraud
In many cases, we are able to resolve cases without criminal charges being recommended. Our goal is to convince the government that no tax crimes were committed.
IRS Audit Services
- Income tax audits
- Sales tax audits
- Payroll & Employment tax audits
- Estate tax audits
The IRS has become more aggressive in the number of tax audits. If you've been notified that your tax return has been selected for review, getting professional help is important to protecting your rights and achieving the best result.
Why are you being audited?
You shouldn't assume that you are being audited for a personal reason. A large number of taxpaying citizens have the unpleasant experience of being audited (the IRS uses the term "examination") at some point during their lives. The IRS uses a statistical analysis, known as "DIF" scores, that indicates a higher than average chance of tax understatement.
Who has a higher chance of being audited?
Taxpayers who have significant capital gain transactions reported on Schedule D are more likely to be audited since asset tax basis issues can result in adjustments. Taxpayers who have filed Schedule Cs (sole proprietorships) are also likely to be audited based on the amount of deductions claimed in relation to gross business income.
Also, taxpayers who fail to report all sources of income or report them improperly or those who omit W-2s and other return schedules will draw attention.
If you hire an attorney, will the IRS think you're hiding something?
The IRS is accustomed to dealing with a taxpayer's representative. In fact, many taxpayers create more problems for themselves by not hiring a tax attorney. If you are being audited right now, do you know your full legal rights? Have you filed paperwork in a timely fashion? Do you understand the process and what to do next?
If you've answered "no" to even one of these questions, then it's likely that the IRS and state audit representatives have an unfair advantage over you. Be careful. Representatives are trained to extract more information than you legally need to disclose. Information they get from you can increase your tax liability, which, in turn, can lead to more tax years being audited.
Benefits of hiring a tax attorney?
Your San Francisco tax attorney at GoldPoint can step in and protect you and your assets. You'll never have to speak to the IRS agent yourself. We personally handle all correspondence and meetings. If your case requires a visit to the court, you will benefit from our substantial experience representing individual and business taxpayers. But you can rest assured that with GoldPoint Law Group on your side, your case will likely never make it to court.
What are some IRS programs to help you lower your payment?
Offer-in-compromise: allows settlement of older tax liabilities at a significantly reduced figure or eliminates them entirely.
Discounted Settlement: allows negotiation of a substantially lesser tax liability than actually owed.
Reduction Of Penalties: saves you money and payment of interest on interest.
Convenient Payment Schedule: allows arrangement of tax payments that are practical and sensible for you, not the IRS.
Bankruptcy: allows you to wipe out your entire IRS debt.
Offer in Compromise
What is an offer in compromise (OIC)?
An OIC is an agreement between a taxpayer and the IRS that resolves the taxpayer's tax liability. Under certain circumstances, the IRS has the authority to settle (compromise) for less than the full payment.
Under what circumstances does the IRS legally compromise?
Doubt as to Liability: Doubt exists that the assessed tax is correct.
Doubt as to Collectibility: Doubt exists that the taxpayer is able to pay the full amount of tax owed.
Effective Tax Administration: There is no doubt that the tax is correct and no doubt that the amount owed could be collected in full, but exceptional circumstances exist that make a full collection unviable. Full collection might create severe economic hardship. Or perhaps there are equity considerations that must be taken into consideration.
The taxpayer bears the burden of proof to show their OIC qualifies for equity considerations. They must show that their circumstances are compelling enough to justify acceptance of their OIC compared to other taxpayers in similar circumstances.
Your San Francisco tax attorney at GoldPoint Law Group is versed in the IRS offer in compromise program. Call us today to set up a free, no obligation consultation.
What is an IRS Tax Levy?
An IRS Tax Levy is a legal seizure of assets to satisfy a tax debt.
What is an IRS levy attached to?
A tax levy can be attached to your property, such as your house or car. More often, though, a levy is applied to your bank accounts, wages, or even to a business's accounts receivable. If you're having IRS problems, even a simple thing like cashing a check can be difficult.
Can the IRS levy under any circumstance?
No. The IRS levies only after 3 requirements are met:
- The IRS assessed the tax and sent you a Notice and Demand for Payment
- You neglected or refused to pay the tax; and
- The IRS sent you a Final Notice of Intent to Levy and Notice of Your Right to A Hearing (levy notice) at least
30 days before the levy. Please note: if the IRS levies your state tax refund, you may receive a Notice of Levy on Your State Tax Refund, Notice of Your Right to Hearing after the levy.
How can we help?
We will prevent a tax levy by requesting a Collection Due Process hearing. We will convince the IRS that alternatives to a levy exist.
What if your wages or bank account have already been levied?
We will use our expertise to convince the IRS to release the levy and prevent any future levies by negotiating a tax collection alternative.
At every stage of the process, your San Francisco tax attorney at Gold Point Law Group will aggressively represent you to achieve the best possible result.
If you owe back taxes, the IRS and state agencies can place a tax lien on your assets. The tax lien attaches to all property and rights to property.
How does the IRS enforce a tax lien?
The IRS or state tax agency can enforce the tax lien by levying the taxpayer's assets. A tax lien is recorded by one or several county recorders and alerts everyone that you owe back taxes. This is catastrophic to the taxpayer's credit and ability to borrow, refinance or lease.
What can I do?
If you engage GoldPoint early in the process, we may be able to prevent the filing of the tax liens by negotiating with the IRS and state tax representatives.
If the lien has already been enforced, we will use our in-depth knowledge of tax procedures to see if all requirements were met for filing the lien. Our goal is to convince the IRS or state tax representative that it is in the government's best interest to withdraw the tax lien and help facilitate the payment of taxes due.
Protect yourself by calling us today to set up a free, no obligation consultation.
Innocent Spouse Relief
Many married taxpayers choose to file a joint tax return due to the benefits of this filing status. Because both taxpayers are jointly and individually responsible for any tax, interest, or penalty due on the joint return, one spouse may be held responsible for all the tax due.
Can a spouse be held responsible even if the couple divorces?
Yes, if the divorce occurs after the joint filing, one spouse may be held responsible for all tax, interest, and penalty due.
Can the IRS hold you responsible even if the income was earned by the other spouse?
Can a divorce decree protect you from being responsible?
No. Even if a divorce decree states that a former spouse will be responsible for any amounts due on previously filed joint incomes, both taxpayers are jointly and individually responsible for the tax, interest and penalties due.
What are you options?
Under 3 circumstances, the IRS may relieve a spouse from tax, interest and penalties on a joint tax return.
- Innocent spouse relief
- Allocation of liability
- Equitable relief
How do you know if you are entitled to one of the 3 forms of innocent spouse relief?
The analysis is complicated and the only way to ensure you are fully protected is to engage a tax attorney. A San Francisco tax attorney at GoldPoint Law Group can navigate the tricky process and determine if you qualify for relief. If you do, rest assured that we will aggressively represent you in front of the Tax Court in order to make an innocent spouse claim on your behalf.
Unfiled Tax Returns
If you don't respond to notices from the IRS or state tax representative asking for delinquent tax returns, they have the authority to prepare your tax returns for you. They do so based on information received from third parties. Any deductions you would be entitled to are omitted. This often leads to heavy tax liabilities, including penalties and interest.
In more egregious cases, you may even face prison time.
GoldPoint Law Group has considerable experience representing clients in such situations and has consistently achieved favorable results on their behalf. Contact us today for a free, no obligation consultation.
The IRS and the EDD use a sophisticated test to evaluate whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor. A payroll tax issue usually comes about when the IRS or California EDD believe that you have improperly treated your employees as independent contractors.
What can you do?
You must gather evidence to prove to the IRS and EDD that your workers were properly treated as independent contractors. GoldPoint Law Group can help gather the necessary evidence to satisfy the auditors.
If, in the rare circumstance, the auditors are not convinced, we will aggressively represent you before the IRS Appeals Office or in court.
What if you had a reasonable basis to treat your employees as independent contractors?
We can help you qualify for a safe harbor provision known as Section 530 relief.
Does your business owe payroll taxes?
Your San Francisco tax attorney at GoldPoint Law Group can help you qualify for an offer in compromise or an installment agreement. We will work with you to see what is in your business's best interest and negotiate the best possible deal on your behalf.
Sales Tax Defense
California imposes sales tax on gross receipts from retail sales. Retailers are required to collect and pay sales tax to the State Board of Equalization. The Board of Equalization conducts sales tax audits and collects unpaid sales taxes.
To resolve the sales tax audit, we can help you to reconstruct and analyze your sales records. We can also assist you in resolving any outstanding tax liabilities. We will argue your case before the Board of Equalization auditors.
If the matter cannot be resolved, the Board will issue a Notice of Determination. You have 30 days to protest this determination. Don't delay. Engage a San Francisco tax attorney in a timely fashion to protect you and your business.
Trust Fund Recovery Penalties
Trust Fund taxes are the income and social security taxes an employer withholds from the wages of employees. Failing to pay payroll taxes can result in heavy penalties and interest. You may end up owing more than the initial, unpaid tax.
The IRS aggressively pursues businesses for unpaid payroll taxes. Although corporate officers, directors, stockholders and employees are normally protected against the debts of their corporations, the IRS can assess personal liability and pursue the business owner personally for the business's unpaid payroll tax liabilities.
Sometimes, the IRS will even penalize the business's accountants, bookkeepers, anyone who has the authority to sign checks.
Call GoldPoint Law Group today so that we can evaluate your case. Protect your business and your assets.