Recently there have been several companies representing taxpayers who have gone out of business and taken payment for services that were never delivered. Unfortunately, many taxpayers have been left with a mess to handle on their own and no money to fight the IRS. That is a frustrating situation to be in.

What has happened in the tax service industry is no different than what often happens in life. Someone got greedy. An idea to represent the average helpless taxpayer turned into a scam. Many times the average taxpayer finds himself or herself drowning in a sea of tax debt and no way to dig out of the black hole. Often depression set in and even thoughts of taking one’s life comes to mind.

It is a shame that we hear of people paying for tax representation are often taken advantage of. Or the high pressure salesmen or saleswomen make “pie in the sky” promises that are not realistic. Often they promise the taxpayer that if they pay $4,000 to $7,000, they can get an Offer In Compromise through the IRS maze and all their tax debt will be reduced to pennys. What a joke this is.

First and foremost, a taxpayer should check the references of the professionals who will representing them. The Better Business Bureau (BBB) is a good place to start your research. For a professional to have zero complaints is very good sign. You should check out the policies of the BBB and determine for yourself if you think the professionals are performing at a level that you find acceptable.

I have only one suggestion. Check the professionals you are dealing with and watch for promises not delivered. There are some “Big Houses” out there that spend a bunch on money on tv ads and radio spots who don’t your money on good representatives who will work for you. Be careful.

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