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No matter whether you need standard tax preparation services or you’re looking to settle substantial tax debt, finding a reputable service provider is crucial. When it comes to tax relief services, there’s an entire range of options based on how much you owe, how long you’ve owed money to the IRS, and what penalties you’re facing as a result of back taxes.
In this post, we’ll shed light on what makes a good tax relief services company and how to know whether you’re working with a trustworthy and professional source. You’ll also discover which characteristics to stay away from, so that you can avoid using tax relief service providers that might inevitably end up wasting your time or money.
A tax relief services company is any service provider that markets to individuals with financial distress as a result of unpaid taxes to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS); these companies help consumers negotiate or settle their unresolved tax issues and often provide expert guidance and resources as the consumer works with the IRS to retain good standing.
A qualified tax relief professional can be a necessary intermediary for individuals facing back taxes and other harsh federal penalties. Many times, these service providers can assist with:
Although there are many legitimate tax relief service companies that help consumers year-round, the Federal Trade Commission regularly monitors consumer reports for fraudulent and misleading tax relief service providers.
Fraudulent companies are those that make substantial claims while failing to provide results, or while charging significant premiums that leave consumers in even greater debt. It’s always wise to read consumer reports and to check for any FTC complaints before proceeding with tax relief assistance.
Fortunately, many of the top tax relief service providers in the country have common characteristics that set them apart. These companies successfully help consumers overcome and settle obligations with the IRS. Below, we’ll discuss the characteristics for trustworthy tax relief services in more detail.
If you’re on the hunt for a trustworthy tax relief service, start with each company’s track record.
To find this out, you may want to:
Perform your due diligence at this stage to avoid any surprises that come in the form of negative reviews or consumer complaints.
Second, it’s good practice to know how the tax relief service company you choose will charge for its services. Is the company upfront about how much and how often they charge while working on your case? Can you easily locate fees and other charges from a personal account or customer portal?
If payment for services seems secretive or vague, it’s best to stay away. Never sign a contract without first understanding how much you will be expected to pay for tax relief help.
A good tax relief service company employs staff members who are well-versed in relevant tax regulations and federal laws. Depending on the severity of tax debts and obligations, some companies may work with licensed tax attorneys. Always ask about the knowledge, expertise, and training that your assigned tax professional will bring to the job.
Did you know that some tax relief service companies only work with individuals who meet a minimum debt threshold? Although many providers can help regardless of how much you owe, others specialize in debts and back taxes that exceed $10,000.
A strong tax relief service is up front about minimum requirements and typically filters customers through a qualification process before accepting or declining their business.
Does your tax relief service provider offer a money back guarantee? This quality is one of the hallmarks of strong, reputable tax professionals. Getting the results you need is often critical for your personal finances and future.
Choosing a company that promises results can provide reassurance during an otherwise chaotic time.
Now that you’ve learned some of the characteristics to seek in a tax relief service, we’ll dive into some of the qualities that you should ultimately avoid.
Remember, no matter how drastic your situation may seem, doing business with reputable providers only is extremely important to your financial health in the long-run.
If the representatives from a tax relief company can’t provide any record of success, it’s time to move on. Proven results are critical, especially when you’re dealing with federal tax laws and legal obligations. When your financial stability is on the line, choosing a company that has a solid reputation matters.
Although newer companies might provide enticing incentives to get customers in the door, it’s always a good idea to go with tax relief service providers that have a substantial and established history. The longer that a tax relief provider has been in business, the more experience they have in helping customers overcome a wide range of tax hardships.
Consumers may be skeptical of tax relief services due to hidden fees and miscellaneous charges that many companies are known for. While it’s reasonable to pay for professional assistance, it’s not reasonable to be taken advantage of. Stay away from any company that springs hidden charges and substantial fees upon individuals who are already facing financial difficulty and stress.
Arian serves as the CEO at Tax Hardship Center, LLC – one of the nation’s leading tax resolution companies. Credentialled by the US Department of Treasury as an Enrolled Agent, Arian is avid about providing transparency in the tax resolution industry. Arian is an author and editor at Solvable and contributes specifically on tax resolution topics. With nearly a decade of financial services experience, Arian has well-rounded knowledge of the tax resolution industry and has led Tax Hardship Center to become one of the nation’s top tax resolution companies.