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Income tax can be tricky to navigate, and it's something that needs to be done right. For added peace of mind when it comes to tax time, you could hire an income tax lawyer to help take over a chunk of your life admin.
Read on to discover how to get free quotes for income tax lawyers and to get the lowdown on the service you'll be paying for.
Where can I find an income tax lawyer online?
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What do income tax lawyers do?
Income tax lawyers give expert advice to individuals and businesses on all areas of income tax. They can help with both straightforward and complex issues relating to the ATO (Australian Taxation Office).
An income tax layer can help you understand your tax obligations and rights and provide legal advice on issues such as audits, objections and tax debts. They can also represent you in court if you have taxation issues that cannot be resolved privately.
When should I use an income tax lawyer?
You can use income tax lawyers for tax planning or if you've run into a specific problem with the ATO. An income tax lawyer will essentially make sure you are compliant with Australian tax law and give advice on tricky tax issues.
These lawyers are especially useful when being audited and will help you understand your legal rights and obligations. Income tax lawyers will guide you through the process of dealing with the ATO and help you prepare necessary proof and documents.
A lawyer will fight to prevent you from overpaying tax and minimise any penalties you receive. In some circumstances, they will help you lodge an objection if you are unhappy with the result of your tax assessment and have the decision reviewed.
Taxation lawyers can also negotiate on your behalf with the ATO when it comes to your outstanding tax debts. They may try to reduce the amount, or set up a payment plan if you are unable to pay by the specified date.
What services does an income tax lawyer offer?
An income tax lawyer usually provides services such as:
- Guiding you through a tax audit. They help you prepare necessary documents and represent you in meetings with the taxation office
- Helping you lodge an objection to an incorrect or unfair decision by the ATO – typically after an audit or tax assessment
- Represent you if your tax dispute is taken to court
- Negotiate on your behalf with the ATO to minimise penalties, fines and debts
- Making sure you are aware of your tax obligations to avoid any legal action in future.
How effective is an income tax lawyer?
Hiring a lawyer early on when faced with tax problems can save you thousands of dollars. A lawyer will give you expert advice and make sure your tax affairs comply with ATO regulations, keeping you out of legal trouble. They will also save you money by assisting with audits and disputes, reducing penalties or negotiating payment plans for tax debts.
Read about small business lawyers if you're in the beginning stages of setting up a new business.
Do I really need an income tax lawyer?
Whether or not you need a lawyer depends on a number of factors that are specific to your circumstances, including how serious your issue is.
For audits and small disputes you can choose the route of alternative dispute resolution (ADR); this involves approaches like mediation and neutral evaluation. You don't need a lawyer for this and it is often a good starting point in resolving tax disputes with the ATO.
If these methods do not work or you are fighting for a reduction in your tax debt, then you may well need a lawyer to represent you. If unpaid tax debts are not addressed the ATO may choose to garnish your bank account or ultimately serve you a bankruptcy notice. These measures will have serious impacts on your finances in the future. So, it's likely a good idea to seek the help of a lawyer immediately if, for example, you have been issued a penalty you cannot pay by the due date.
Income tax lawyer vs accountant
Both income tax lawyers and accountants have highly specialised knowledge of tax law. Either one of these professionals can help you with tax payments and planning. They can typically advise you on the following:
- Which deductions you are entitled to claim
- Your tax obligations
- Compliance with Australian tax law
- Smart financial decisions to make in relation to tax.
However, only an income tax lawyer can represent you in court and so these professionals are better equipped to handle serious matters such as ATO prosecution and disputes.
If you are looking to compare tax accountants, our guide can help you out.Back to top
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