Tax Attorney Hawaii: What You Should Know
Tax Attorney Hawaii: What You Should Know
A tax attorney has in-depth knowledge and expertise in tax law, which allows them to provide guidance and advice on complex tax issues. They can help you navigate the intricacies of the tax code, interpret tax regulations, and identify tax-saving opportunities. If you or your business are being audited by the IRS or the state of Hawaii, a tax attorney can represent you during the audit process. They can help you gather and present the necessary documentation, negotiate with the tax authorities, and ensure that your rights are protected. A tax attorney can assist with tax planning and strategy, helping you structure your financial affairs in a tax-efficient manner. They can advise on tax implications of different business structures, investments, and transactions, and help you minimize your tax liability.
How To Choose A Good Tax Attorney in Hawaii
Choosing a good tax attorney in Hawaii can be a daunting task, but it is crucial to ensure that you receive the best possible legal representation for your tax issues. Here are some tips on how to choose a good tax attorney in Hawaii:
- Look for specialized tax attorneys: It is essential to find an attorney who specializes in tax law. This specialization ensures that they have a thorough understanding of the laws and regulations that apply to your specific situation.
- Check for credentials: Look for an attorney who has a J.D. degree and is licensed to practice law in Hawaii. You can also check for additional credentials, such as a Master of Laws (LL.M.) in Taxation, which indicates additional training and expertise in tax law.
- Research their experience: Look for an attorney who has experience handling tax-related cases. Find out how long they have been practicing law, and if they have successfully handled cases similar to yours.
- Check for references: Ask for references and check online reviews to get an idea of the attorney’s reputation and track record.
- Assess their communication skills: Choose an attorney who communicates clearly and effectively. A good tax attorney should be able to explain complex tax laws and regulations in a way that is easy to understand.
- Consider the cost: It is important to understand the attorney’s fee structure before hiring them. Some attorneys charge hourly rates, while others work on a contingency fee basis.
- Schedule a consultation: Meet with the attorney in person or over the phone to discuss your case and assess their suitability for your needs.
Seeking A Tax Attorney In Your City?
The biggest cities in Hawaii, based on population size, are:
- Honolulu – Population: 347,397 (as of 2020)
- East Honolulu – Population: 49,914 (as of 2020)
- Pearl City – Population: 47,373 (as of 2020)
- Hilo – Population: 39,215 (as of 2020)
- Kailua – Population: 38,635 (as of 2020)
- Waipahu – Population: 38,216 (as of 2020)
- Kaneohe – Population: 34,759 (as of 2020)
- Mililani Town – Population: 28,608 (as of 2020)
- Kahului – Population: 26,337 (as of 2020)
- Kihei – Population: 23,382 (as of 2020)
Note: The population data is based on the United States Census Bureau’s estimates for 2020.
Common Fees For Tax Attorneys in Hawaii
The fees for tax attorneys in Hawaii can vary depending on several factors, such as the complexity of the case, the attorney’s experience and expertise, the amount of time involved, and the attorney’s billing method. Here are some common fees that tax attorneys in Hawaii may charge:
- Hourly rates: Some tax attorneys in Hawaii charge hourly rates that typically range from $250 to $750 per hour. The hourly rate may vary based on the attorney’s experience, the complexity of the case, and the location of the attorney’s office.
- Flat fees: Tax attorneys may also charge a flat fee for certain services, such as preparing tax returns or handling an IRS audit. The flat fee may vary depending on the scope of the work.
- Contingency fees: In some cases, tax attorneys may work on a contingency fee basis, where the attorney’s fee is based on a percentage of the amount of money recovered in a tax dispute or settlement.
- Retainer fees: Tax attorneys may also require a retainer fee upfront before starting work on a case. The retainer fee is typically a lump sum payment that is applied towards the attorney’s hourly rate or flat fee.
It is important to discuss the fees and billing arrangements with your tax attorney before hiring them to avoid any surprises or misunderstandings. Make sure to review the engagement letter and fee agreement carefully before signing them.
Common Individual Tax Issues
Here are some common individual tax issues that people in Hawaii and other parts of the United States may face:
- Filing and paying taxes: Individuals are required to file their federal and state income tax returns each year and pay any taxes owed by the filing deadline.
- Unreported income: Failure to report all income, including wages, self-employment income, rental income, and investment income, can result in an audit or penalty.
- Tax credits and deductions: Taxpayers may miss out on tax credits and deductions they are entitled to if they do not understand the tax laws and regulations.
- Non-filing of tax returns: Failure to file a tax return can result in fines, penalties, and interest charges.
- IRS audits: The IRS may select a tax return for an audit to determine if the taxpayer has reported all income and claimed deductions and credits correctly.
- Tax debt: Taxpayers who owe taxes may face penalties and interest charges on the unpaid amount, and the IRS may take enforcement actions, such as wage garnishments, bank levies, and liens, to collect the debt.
- Tax identity theft: Tax identity theft occurs when someone uses a taxpayer’s Social Security number to file a fraudulent tax return or claim a refund.
Corporate Tax Issues
Corporate tax issues can be complex and can have significant financial and legal consequences for businesses. Here are some common corporate tax issues that businesses in Hawaii and other parts of the United States may face:
- Tax planning and compliance: Businesses must comply with federal and state tax laws and regulations and plan for tax payments and filing deadlines.
- Deductions and credits: Businesses may be entitled to tax deductions and credits for expenses, such as salaries and wages, equipment and supplies, and research and development, but they need to follow specific rules to claim these benefits.
- Transfer pricing: Companies with international operations may need to comply with transfer pricing rules, which require them to set fair prices for transactions between related parties to prevent tax avoidance.
- State and local taxes: Companies must comply with state and local tax laws and regulations, including sales and use taxes, property taxes, and other taxes and fees.
- Tax audits and disputes: The IRS and state tax authorities may conduct audits to determine if a company has reported income and deductions accurately. Disputes with tax authorities over tax liability, penalties, and interest can be costly and time-consuming.
- Tax reform: Changes in tax laws and regulations, such as the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, can affect corporate tax planning and compliance.
Common Tax Resolutions
Tax resolutions refer to the methods taxpayers use to settle or pay their tax debts. Here are some common tax resolutions:
- Installment agreements: Taxpayers who owe back taxes but cannot pay the full amount at once may be able to set up an installment agreement with the IRS to pay the debt over time.
- Offer in compromise: An offer in compromise is a settlement agreement between the taxpayer and the IRS in which the taxpayer agrees to pay a reduced amount of their tax debt in exchange for the IRS forgiving the remaining balance.
- Currently Not Collectible (CNC) status: If a taxpayer is facing financial hardship and cannot pay their tax debt, the IRS may agree to place the account in a “currently not collectible” status, meaning that the IRS will temporarily suspend collection activity.
- Innocent spouse relief: If a taxpayer is married and filed a joint tax return with their spouse, but the IRS is pursuing collection of a tax debt owed by the other spouse, the innocent spouse may be able to claim relief from the tax liability.
Risks of Using a Tax Attorney in Hawaii
While there are many benefits to using a tax attorney in Hawaii, there are also some risks to consider:
- Cost: Tax attorneys can be expensive, and their fees can quickly add up, especially if you have a complex tax issue. It is important to understand the fee structure upfront and ensure that you can afford the services.
- No guarantee of success: Hiring a tax attorney does not guarantee a favorable outcome. While a tax attorney can provide legal advice and represent you before the IRS or state tax authority, the outcome of your case depends on many factors, including the facts of the case and the law.
- Confidentiality: Tax attorneys are bound by professional ethics to maintain the confidentiality of their clients’ information, but there is always a risk that confidential information could be inadvertently disclosed or leaked.
- Delays: The legal process can be slow, and using a tax attorney can result in additional delays in resolving your tax issue.
- Potential conflicts of interest: Tax attorneys may represent multiple clients with competing interests, which can create conflicts of interest. It is important to ensure that your tax attorney is representing your best interests.
When Do You Really Need a Tax Attorney?
If you are accused of tax fraud or evasion, it is in your best interest to hire a tax attorney. A tax attorney can represent you in legal proceedings and help you navigate the complex criminal and civil penalties that may apply. If you have a complex estate, it is also recommended to hire a tax attorney. A tax attorney can provide guidance on how to minimize estate taxes and transfer assets to heirs in a tax-efficient manner.
When is a Tax Relief Company Better Than a Tax Attorney?
Tax relief companies and tax attorneys offer different services. Tax relief companies specialize in negotiating with the IRS and states on behalf of taxpayers who owe back taxes, penalties, and interest. These companies often have a team of tax professionals, including enrolled agents and tax preparers, who work to negotiate payment plans or settlements with the IRS. They may also provide assistance with preparing and filing tax returns, obtaining tax transcripts, and addressing other tax-related issues. There are situations where a tax relief company may be more beneficial than a tax attorney. Here are a few examples of where a tax relief company may be a better option:
- Your tax debt is under $250K: If you owe less than $250K to the IRS, a tax relief company may be a better option than a tax attorney. Tax relief companies can negotiate with the IRS to reduce or eliminate penalties and interest, and set up an affordable payment plan that works for you.
- You need help with tax preparation: Tax relief companies often offer tax preparation services, which can be beneficial for individuals or businesses who need help filing their taxes correctly. This can help you avoid future tax problems and penalties.
- You want to avoid the high cost of a tax attorney: Tax attorneys can be expensive, and their hourly rates can quickly add up. A tax relief company may offer more affordable options, such as a flat fee for their services.
Benefits of Using an Experienced Tax Relief Firm
Using an experienced tax relief firm can offer many benefits for taxpayers facing tax issues or disputes with the IRS or state tax authorities, including:
- Expertise: Experienced tax relief firms have a deep understanding of tax laws and regulations, as well as the tax relief options available to taxpayers. They can provide expert advice on how to best resolve tax issues and minimize tax liabilities.
- Representation: Tax relief firms can represent taxpayers before the IRS or state tax authorities, negotiating with tax officials on their behalf and advocating for their best interests.
- Time-saving: Tax relief firms can handle all aspects of the tax resolution process, including paperwork and communication with the IRS or state tax authorities, saving taxpayers time and effort.
- Lower stress: Dealing with tax issues can be stressful, but tax relief firms can handle the process and provide peace of mind, knowing that experts are handling the situation.
- Cost-effective: While tax relief firms do charge fees for their services, they can often negotiate payment plans or settle tax debts for less than the full amount owed, saving taxpayers money in the long run.
- Confidentiality: Tax relief firms are bound by professional ethics to maintain the confidentiality of their clients’ information, which can be important for taxpayers who are concerned about privacy.
CuraDebt Tax Is At Your Service
If you are a resident of Hawaii who needs help resolving tax debt issues, we are here to help. We have 22 years of experience helping clients with numerous tax related issues. Contact us toll free today for your free consultation. Or submit here online for a free consultation. We will find the best resolution available to you based on your financial situation. 1-877-999-0486