Owing back taxes to the IRS is a stressful experience. This guide from The Credit Review outlines 5 ways to pick the best tax relief company for you and our recommendations for the top tax relief companies of 2019.
2019 Best Tax Relief Services in America
Tax debt is an issue that affects over 18 million Americans nationwide. Each year, American consumers wind up owing around $458 billion to the IRS, of which only 11% is ever recovered.
Because taxpayers are required to pay income taxes annually, missing the tax deadline can result in severe consequences which can cost you additional money and distress over time.
The repercussions of not paying your tax debt can result in the following debt collection actions:
Although tax debt is the most difficult type of debt to deal with, the IRS has implemented some tax relief programs to help consumers struggling with their debt.
The IRS generally has 10 years to collect on delinquent taxes. Taxpayers who are up to date on their taxes are more likely to pay in the future, so tax relief programs are a win for both the IRS and taxpayers: the IRS will receive their funds and increase their revenue while taxpayers settle their delinquent debt and avoid serious consequences.
Tax relief options offered by the IRS include the following:
While taxpayers can negotiate with the IRS directly, working with a tax relief company can help them navigate complicated tax regulations.
Although working with a tax relief service can be pricey, they can provide excellent assistance to consumers. In addition to helping taxpayers determine whether or not they are eligible for tax relief programs, they can save their clients time and increase their chances of being accepted into these programs.
When you owe back taxes to the IRS, finding a way to reduce that burden is essential. With so many tax relief companies popping up -- along with scammers posing as tax relief services -- it's important that you know how to find the best firm for you.
Even though your final decision depends greatly on your personal financial situation, we will break down some guidelines to help you in the search for the best tax relief service for you:
Your first step when researching a tax debt relief company is to check their qualifications. You don't want to entrust just anyone with your finances.
Reputable tax services generally hold numerous accreditations and memberships, such as an accreditation from the BBB and memberships from the NAEA (National Association of Enrolled Agents), which provides education and training services to enrolled agents, and the NATP (National Association of Tax Professionals), which sets industry standards and offers tax research and educational services to members. Many tax relief services also hold additional local and state notifications.
You may also check their staff's licensing and accreditation. It's essential that the tax relief company has licensed attorneys on staff and that they are licensed to practice in all 50 states.
You can contact the company or check their website to see the credentials of their tax attorneys and enrolled agents.
Tax relief services like Anthem Tax Services have numerous accreditations and memberships, such as an A+ from the BBB and memberships with the CTEC (California Tax Education Council), NAEA (National Association of Enrolled Agents), and NATP (National Association of Tax Professionals). Additionally, all of their staff members are certified professionals who work directly with the IRS on your behalf.
Check to see what services a tax relief company offers. While some only offer a few basic services, either due to a lack of training for their employees or because they would prefer to focus on more profitable areas, top tax relief companies offer a wide variety of services such as:
Depending on the tax relief service, the minimum required enrolled amount and pricing will vary, but reputable tax relief services will provide an initial free consultation and do not charge any upfront fees until services are performed.
Most tax relief companies will generally require a minimum enrolled amount of $5,000 to $10,000. The amount charged varies greatly on the company and complexity of each individual case, although most accredited services could charge anywhere from $2,000 to $10,000. Services like Anthem Tax Services start their services at a low cost of $250 and have a full money-back guarantee.
Additionally, most reputable tax relief services offer some kind of money back guarantee that shows they have good faith in their ability to provide excellent service.
Another important factor to look for when choosing a tax relief company is the quality of customer service. You can check sites like the BBB or Trustpilot to read real customer reviews.
Additionally, you should be able to contact a company directly to ask any questions you might have to make sure that you are working with a reputable company that has licensed and enrolled agents. You can also gauge the reliability of their support staff and how efficiently they will work to improve your tax situation.
Be on the lookout for red flags. Recently, there has been a large influx of scam artists in the tax relief industry that follows unethical practices. Be wary of any company that promises to rid your tax debt with pennies on the dollar or asks for money upfront without providing services. A reputable service will assess your tax situation before they advise you on your best option.
Finding the right tax debt relief company is an important step to fixing your finances. Check out our top picks for tax debt relief services here.