2019's 5 Best Tax Relief Companies

Interested in legally reducing the amount of taxes you owe to the IRS or state? We've researched 41 tax relief companies and selected the top 5 best services for professionally helping you resolve any IRS issues and exploring your options for reducing state and federal tax debt.

2019 Best Tax Relief Services in America

How To Choose A Tax Relief Company In 2019

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:

  • The IRS can seize your assets
  • They can put a lien on your bank accounts
  • They can garnish income from your wages, retirement, and social security
  • The IRS can hold onto your future tax refunds

Where Can I Find Tax Relief?

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.

Consumers have a number of options to settle their debt based on their unique situation.

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:

  • Bank Levy Release: If you are behind on taxes, the IRS can seize your assets, which can also include bank accounts. This means that they have the ability to withdraw the funds you owe from your bank account or file a levy that takes a percentage of your salary until your tax debt is fully paid off. The IRS can release a bank levy under certain circumstances:
    • The amount owed has already been paid
    • An installment agreement is put into place
    • A levy would create economic hardship for the taxpayer
    • If the taxpayer can prove that removing a levy would make it easier for them to pay their taxes
  • Currently Not Collectible: A currently not collectible status (CNC) is assigned to taxpayers who can't currently qualify for a payment plan but agree that they owe back taxes to the IRS. This allows consumers to have time to get their finances back on track. The IRS usually will not levy the assets of those with a CNC status, but they will withhold their tax refunds to balance the debt.
  • Innocent Spouse Relief: The innocent spouse relief program lets taxpayers avoid paying penalties and taxes that are a result of a spouse or former spouse who reported incorrect items on joint tax returns.
  • Installment Agreements: Installment agreements provide a payment plan that can help them spread out their tax debt payments over a period of time. To qualify for an online payment agreement, taxpayers must owe $50,000 or less and have paid their previous tax returns.
  • Offer In Compromise: The Offer in Compromise (OIC) Program helps reduce the tax liability of consumers who can't afford to pay their tax debt. This allows taxpayers to pay a reduced amount of their tax debt for a specific period of time.
  • Penalty Abatement: Penalties can occur with late filing or payments, which can result in fees that are up to 5% of unpaid taxes each month. The IRS offers penalty abatement programs that can reduce or remove tax penalties due to reasonable circumstances or first-time penalty abatement.
  • Tax Abatement: Tax abatement is a reduction of taxes that occurs when the IRS has gone through all other collection methods.
  • Tax Lien Release: The IRS can place a lien on your assets if you fail to pay your taxes, which allows them to show other creditors that they have a legal right to your property. The IRS can release this lien if it helps a delinquent taxpayer pay off their tax debt.

Do I Really Need A Tax Relief Company?

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.

How We Rank Tax Relief Services

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:

5 Steps To Finding The Best Tax Relief Company

Qualifications

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.

Services Offered

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:

  • Administrative appeals
  • Asset seizers
  • Audit protection
  • Audit representation
  • Back taxes (unfiled returns)
  • Bank levy release
  • Bookkeeping services
  • Collection appeal
  • Corporate tax preparation
  • Currently not collectible
  • Free tax consultations
  • Garnishment and levy release
  • Individual state tax relief services
  • Innocent spouse relief
  • Installment agreements
  • IRS audit defense
  • IRS-approved continuing educational services
  • Offer in compromise
  • Payroll tax negotiation
  • Penalty abatements
  • State and federal taxes
  • Statute of limitations
  • Tax audits
  • Tax liens
  • Tax preparation
  • Wage garnishment release

Pricing

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.

Customer 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.

Reputable Practices

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.

The Bottom Line

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.