I am cash strapped and have never hired a tax or legal professional before. I'd appreciate help finding safe, reliable, low-cost assistance in completing the returns and attempting to reduce the fees/penalties. Please help me avoid being ripped off.
Hire an accountant to file the back returns. Ask your friends for recommendations. IF you owe taxes, you will not be able to beat the penalties or interest. Just forget about it, i.e., put it behind you. To keep your costs low, you MUST do all of the work gathering every receipt, W-2, 1099, etc and provide it to your accountant in order of date received or expense incurred. It is just that simple.
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I agree with Attorney Halverson.
You don't need a lawyer - you need a good accountant / tax advisor. I don't know whether there is an Avvo-like site for such professionals.
This information does not constitute legal advice and does not establish an attorney-client relationship.
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Reach out to law schools who offer tax LLM program and see if the school is offering clinic services on a pro bono basis. many universities do this to get the students practical experience in rela life tax situations.
My answer is not intended to be giving legal advice and this topic can be a complex area where the advice of a licensed attorney in your State should be obtained. Please click "helpful" or "best answer" if my answer added any value or add a "comment" if you have more info for me to help you get a better answer.
Depending on the complexity of your tax returns, you may find reasonably priced accountant to get the taxes done. As suggested by the colleagues, find a pro bono attorney or legals services center, or an LLM student recommended by others. Good luck.
Look for a competent EA to prepare your returns. They are usually a bit less expensive. Once the Returns are prepared call the IRS and tell them the numbers off the Returns. Then you can get the levy released and use the One Year Rule for the IRS to allow you to have enough money for all your monthly expenses.
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