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How To Choose A Tax Relief Agency

"We can guarantee the IRS will not place a lien on your property or garnish your wages. Come see us, and see how easy it is to obtain tax relief!"

"Tired of being hounded by the federal government over money you just can't pay? We've helped over a thousand people just like you to settle their tax debts at a fraction of the amount owed!"

Do those pitches sound familiar? If so, then chances are you've seen one of the many advertisements for tax debt relief agencies.

There is a plethora of companies on the market today that claim to be the best at reducing the amount of debt taxpayers owe the federal government. Some of those companies are reputable, while others are no more than clever fronts to convince taxpayers to hand over money for services they will never receive.

The Federal Trade Commission reported last year that it had received numerous complaints from taxpayers who signed up for services with tax relief agencies, only to find they had become the victims of financial fraud. Some companies were accused of requiring upfront fees of several thousand dollars, while others were accused of making unauthorized charges on consumers' credit cards or bank account withdrawals.

The Federal Trade Commission closely monitors agencies of this nature, and takes all complaints about them seriously. In fact, in 2010, the commission was behind a federal judge's decision to shut down a company called American Tax Relief after it had received numerous complaints about the company. The company operated on a nationwide level and is accused of bilking consumers out of thousands of dollars. The company had its license to operate suspended and was ordered to pay restitution to its clients.

So how does one ensure they are not being taken advantage of if they seek out the help of a tax debt relief agency?

There are a few simple rules to consider when choosing a tax relief agency.

The internet can be your friend when it comes to checking the legitimacy and reputation of any agency you are considering using. Websites such as the Better Business Bureau and TopConsumerReviews.com can be used to identify which tax relief companies provide the best service to their customers. If you have a specific agency in mind, research them to make sure they are legitimate before ever contacting them.

If you find no poor reviews or complaints about an agency on the internet, the next step is to find out more information about the people who work for the agency. Are they qualified to represent you? Do they have any prior experience in settling tax claims? Is anyone in the agency certified through the American Society of Tax Problem Solvers, or ASTPS? A non-profit agency, ASTPS consists of professionals who represent taxpayers before the IRS. It only gives certification to agents who are able to pass a written exam, provide evidence they have experience in the tax industry and be a licensed certified public accountant or tax attorney.

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Tax Relief In The News

Scott Walker seeks tax relief for seniors, parents in upcoming state budget

Scott Walker seeks tax relief for seniors, parents in upcoming state budget Scott Walker is seeking to provide more tax relief for seniors and parents paying for child care over the next two years if ...

Published:  Tue, 18 Sep 2018 06:54:00 GMT



IRS Announces Tax Relief For Taxpayers Affected By Hurricane Florence

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Published:  Sat, 15 Sep 2018 11:42:00 GMT



Getting property tax relief

As we move forward to the general election, we must remember that state leaders can provide municipal property tax relief through their work on the next state biennium budget and I am asking that they ...

Published:  Mon, 17 Sep 2018 21:14:00 GMT



SW council adopts broad senior tax relief ordinance

SOUTH WINDSOR - The Town Council on Monday unanimously approved a senior tax stabilization ordinance, raising the annual income limits to include more seniors in town. Proposed by Deputy Mayor Andrew ...

Published:  Tue, 18 Sep 2018 10:16:00 GMT



ERDMAN: Nebraska needs property tax relief

Nebraskans desperately need property tax relief. Over the past ten years property valuations on agricultural land have increased 252 percent statewide and taxes have increased 162 percent. Meanwhile, ...

Published:  Sat, 15 Sep 2018 23:00:00 GMT



Sales tax exemptions eyed to fund Nebraska property tax relief

Nebraska's long list of state sales tax exemptions was identified Thursday as the best potential revenue source to help fund substantial local property tax relief during a legislative forum ...

Published:  Thu, 13 Sep 2018 13:30:00 GMT



IRS announces tax relief for Florence victims

The IRS said Saturday that those caught in Hurricane Florence will get extended time for the next quarterly estimated income tax filing deadline Monday, as well as payroll tax returns due at the end o...

Published:  Sat, 15 Sep 2018 18:12:00 GMT



Springfield homeowners need property tax relief (Letters)

We have been a home owners in Springfield for 40 years, over those years our property taxes have been constantly rising except for a couple ups and downs due to fluctuations in property evaluations an...

Published:  Tue, 18 Sep 2018 10:16:00 GMT




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