Everything You Should Know About a Tax Attorney Free Consultation
If you’ve got tax debt or other tax issues, you should consider a free consultation with a tax attorney. That’s usually the first step toward freedom from the IRS and state tax agencies. You don’t have to muddle through tax debt alone – with an expert’s help, you can easily navigate your IRS notices and deal with your balance due.
A free consultation is pretty straightforward – you sit down with a tax pro and they help you through the nuances of your case. Still, it’s important to feel prepared before you have this meeting. It’s also important to make the most of this opportunity to ensure you hire the best professional for your unique needs.
To help you out, here are the answers to your most pressing questions about tax attorney free consultations:
Why Free Tax Attorney Consultations Are Important
A free tax attorney consultation is the very first step you’ll take toward resolving your tax problems. You’ll learn about the law firm you’re considering, but you’ll also learn what to expect from the whole process. The more you know, the better you can prepare for dealing with the IRS or state tax agency.
A free consultation gives you the perspective to consider whether you’ve chosen the right tax partner, sans pressure. It can help you feel comfortable with the legal team moving forward since you’ll know a little bit more about how they operate.
Free Vs. Paid Tax Attorney Consultations
Know that there’s a difference between free and paid tax attorney consultations. Most of the time, a free consult is an entry-level meeting that ensures your tax problem would actually benefit from a tax attorney. It’s also a chance for you to meet with a member of the team that may be handling your case, which helps you decide if they’re a good fit for your needs.
On the other hand, a paid consultation delves into your problem in-depth. Paid consults generally include a full financial analysis to find the best course of action for your specific situation. A free consultation may be a prerequisite to a paid consultation. The price of a consultation varies, but it can range from $500 to $1200, and that usually applies toward your total fees.
Neither type of consultation is better than the other – in fact, if you get a free consult, you will still likely pay to receive the full financial analysis that you would pay for during a paid consultation, but after you determine you want to move forward with that company. Free consultations are the best way to go if you’re feeling out a firm and trying to decide whether they’re a good fit for you. A paid consultation is helpful if you’re pretty sure you want to go with this specific company and want to know what their next steps would be.
Why Firms Offer Free Consultations with Tax Attorneys
You may be scratching your head and wondering why on earth any lawyer would offer their time for free. After all, time is money, right?
Law firms actually have a lot of incentives to offer free tax attorney consultations. That’s because offering free consultations makes it easier for law firms to find the right clients – those who actually want their services and those that are a good fit for their skill set as a company.
A free consultation can:
- Lower the barrier of contact.
- Help determine if a professional is needed for your case.
- Help put potential clients at ease.
- Ensure that the firm’s services are a good fit.
The Benefits of Getting a Free Tax Attorney Consultation
There are plenty of reasons to get a free tax attorney consultation. Of course, the biggest benefit is the personalized attention you get during the consult. The team member who meets with you will take the time to get to know your situation and confirm that they would be able to handle your issue.
But that’s not all. A free tax law consultation gives you the opportunity to:
- Connect with a lawyer who might work on your case.
- Get a professional opinion on how to handle your tax debt.
- Understand the possible next steps, which could include a full investigation into your financial situation and tax situation to map out the various options.
What to Expect During a Tax Attorney Free Consultation
It’s normal to wonder what to expect during a free tax consultation. Before you go into the consultation, know that the point of the consult is to get you comfortable with the firm and help both parties (you and the firm) understand whether your tax problem is one that they can handle. Realize, many times during a free consultation, you will not be talking directly to the attorney that will be working your case (at times, this may happen, though). You will be talking to someone who greatly understands the company and service offerings and the types of tax problems they can help with.
Here’s what usually happens during a free tax lawyer consultation:
- They’ll ask you questions about your tax problem and discuss the tax amount that you owe or any other tax problems you’re having.
- They’ll get basic information about your financial details – specific details are generally reserved for the in-depth paid investigation process.
- They’ll give you advice on how to continue next, which could be proceeding to a paid financial analysis or services, going to another firm (if this firm’s services don’t meet your needs), or even resolving the tax situation by yourself if the firm’s fees don’t justify the solution.
- They give you an opportunity to ask your questions and have them answered by a company representative.
You should not expect a full financial analysis from a free consultation since that generally doesn’t happen. A paid consultation includes a full financial analysis with tax transcripts and financial records included, which can inform the firm on the best way to handle your case.
If this is the service that you need, then you may want to proceed straight to a paid consultation. Remember, they’re not mutually exclusive, though. It’s common to get a free consultation and then move to a paid consultation as the next step for financial analysis.
Questions to Ask During a Tax Lawyer Free Consultation
During any free consultation, you’ll be given the opportunity to ask questions about your case and how the firm handles things. It’s certain that you’ll have questions, so why not find the answers before you move forward?
Consider asking your tax lawyer the following questions during a consultation:
Who will be working on my case?
It’s not a given that the person who consults with you will be the attorney who handles your case. You’ll usually meet with somebody who is familiar with the attorneys’ experience and can refer you to the right person after assessing the needs of your case. You can request to speak to somebody who would be likely to handle your case if that matters to you.
Will I have a stable point of contact?
Ideally, you want a consistent point of contact in the tax firm. This doesn’t necessarily have to be the tax attorney who negotiates with the IRS or files forms for you. It simply needs to be someone who answers your calls and helps you stay connected with the tax agency.
What’s your experience with the IRS or state agency?
It’s important to know whether an agency has direct experience dealing with the IRS or state tax agency in the capacity that you need. That means you should ask if they’ve dealt with the same tax problem you have. If their experience is limited (or nonexistent), then it’s a red flag, and you should try to find a different tax firm.
What are your success stories?
You want to know that a law firm’s clients are happy with their experience, right? Most law firms are happy to share their tax law success stories in the form of a case study. If a tax law firm isn’t happy to share success stories, then that’s a potential red flag.
Preparing for a Tax Lawyer Free Consultation
A free consultation doesn’t require much legwork from you beforehand, but it’s still good to be prepared. Before your consultation, make sure you know the following:
- What your tax problem is.
- What notices you’ve received from the IRS or state tax agency.
- How much tax debt you owe.
- What your monthly cash flow is based on your expenses and income.
If you want to be extra-prepared, you can bring along copies of the tax notices that you’ve received, which will have detailed information on them that the tax professionals can use to review your case. Bank statements can help corroborate your monthly cash flow.
That being said, it’s always good to ask the law firm beforehand what documentation they prefer to see during a free consultation. They may prefer that you bring more (or nothing at all).
Red Flags to Look for During a Tax Attorney Free Consultation
If you see any of these red flags, that’s a sign that you should consider working with a different firm. In particular, you’ll see a lot of these issues if you reach out to the big nationwide firms.
Avoid law firms that use hard sales tactics. A firm’s goal should be to work with the right clients, e.g., ones that actually need that firm’s services. If a law firm is trying to push a hard sale on you and you’re not sure that you actually need the service, it’s a red flag. You should never work with a pushy law firm that makes you feel obligated to buy into their services.
You don’t want to deal with a company that’s vague and not articulate at explaining themselves. If your consultation leaves you with more questions than you arrived with, it’s probably a red flag. You want to look for a firm that has compassionate attorneys who are good at explaining difficult concepts in layman’s terms.
Lack of Experience
If a law firm doesn’t have experience dealing with tax debt and tax law, then that’s another red flag. You don’t want to trust your taxes and financial health with a firm that’s a jack-of-all-trades. Tax resolution is a complicated field, and it’s best to trust your tax issues to a lawyer who’s well-versed in the nuances of this section of the tax code.
You’re here because you’re not a tax expert, so why should the firm expect you to be one? It’s a red flag if you show up and they start selling you on services without having a good explanation of why you need those services or what they entail. A good law firm will make you comfortable with the options and ensure that you understand everything that’s about to happen. You won’t be left scratching your head in confusion after a consultation with the right firm.
Get a Free Tax Attorney Consultation
If you’ve made it this far, you probably feel a lot more confident about handling your free tax attorney consultation.
Now it’s time to move forward with that free consultation and learn what W Tax Group can do for you. We’ll walk you through the services we offer and how we can help you make back taxes a distant dream. Just contact us at (877) 500-4930 or fill out the online contact form to get your completely free consultation today!