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Is $10000 dollars for an attorney to high to spend on tax litigation?

Everett, WA |

I've spent almost $10000 dollars on tax litigation appealsand am not really sure what the results might be. Is this too high?

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Attorney answers 4


I don't practice in tax, but the same principle applies to any type of litigation. Legal services are expensive. Plenty of lawyers charge $300 per hour and more. The amount of time needed to do the job determines the legal bill. A $10,000 bill for a tax appeal does not surprise me but it's impossible to say whether it is reasonable in this particular case without knowing all the facts. You never know what the results might be. If you did know there would be no need to litigate. The issue is, what is at stake? If the tax bill is $100,000 or if you are facing potential criminal tax evasion charges, it does not seem unreasonable to spend $10,000 or more for legal services to fight it, or failing that to compromise it and save some money. If the bill is $5000, there would be no point in spending $10,000 in legal fees.

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In my experience, you get what you pay for. Quality legal representation comes with a cost. As my colleague said, 10,000 might not be a lot to spend depending on the amount at stake in the litigation.

I do a lot of litigation in my practice, and often, to take a case from inception through trial, the bill can amount to 30K at the very least, and that's me keeping the billing conservative. It takes a lot of time to research and write court pleadings and memoranda, to prepare for depositions and to prepare for trial.


I agree with my colleagues on this. However, you should receive a detailed invoice of services provided from your lawyer so you can judge for yourself (or ask another attorney's opinion) whether the amount charged was excessive.

The above answer is based general legal principals applied to the limited information provided in the question. My answer is not intended to nor should it be construed as providing legal advice or opinions, and, under no circumstances, does it constitute the establishment of an attorney-client relationship. Please be aware that the law and its interpretation differs from jurisdiction to jurisdiction and therefore you should consult with an attorney who will be more familiar with your particular situation and the application of relevant law.


It depends on the complexity of your case and what is at stake.

Andrew J Wyman