Nevada Tax Lawyer

While no one likes to pay taxes, Franklin D. Roosevelt explained why taxes are, indeed, necessary:

“Taxes, after all, are dues that we pay for the privileges of membership in an organized society.”

Having said that, Americans are required to pay only the taxes owed; no more; so, tax planning and tax law are an integral part of the practice of law with most planning centered on income tax planning, corporate tax planning, and estate planning.

Types of Tax Planning

As the name denotes, “tax” lawyers handle all matters pertaining to taxes.  There’s been a lot of public discussion about the controversial estate tax, sometimes called the “death tax” by detractors; and, there are many other areas of taxation as well.  These include local, state and federal income tax; gift tax; generation skipping tax; employment taxes; and corporate tax.

Tax planning refers to the area of practice wherein tax attorneys identify and implement legal methods for reducing your taxes so that you pay what you owe, no more.

Dealing with the IRS

Tax attorneys also help people deal with local and state taxing authorities, and, especially, the federal Internal Revenue Service (IRS.)  Tax attorneys provide advice and legal counsel and represent your best interests in front of taxing authorities and in court.

Tax Law FAQs

Am I only allowed to give my daughter $13,000 per year? The $13,000 annual gift tax exemption is really not a limit at all; it’s simply one way you can pass assets without paying gift taxes.  The rule states that each calendar year, you may transfer $13,000 to as many individuals as you would like.  If you’re married, you and your spouse can transfer $26,000 to as many individuals as you would like, by splitting gifts.  No gift tax return is required.

You can transfer as many assets as you would like to your daughter.  In 2011 and 2012, you could transfer up to an additional $5,000,000 ($10,000,000, if you’re married) to your daughter and still not pay gift taxes, although you would need to file an informational gift tax return.

You can also pay your daughter’s (or anyone else’s) educational expenses directly to the provider and not incur gift tax. Be sure to consult with a qualified tax attorney about your individual gifting situation.

Which type of business entity is simplest for tax purposes? A sole proprietorship is the simplest form of business ownership and the taxes are the simplest; however, there are other factors besides taxes to consider when choosing a business entity. Important considerations include asset protection and day to day ease of functioning.  Consult with a qualified tax attorney or business attorney to help you choose and establish the business entity that is most appropriate for you.

Are my tax debts dischargeable in bankruptcy? In extremely limited circumstances, tax debts are dischargeable in bankruptcy.  The general rule is that they are not.  Analysis of your individual case is required to give a specific answer.  See a tax attorney or bankruptcy attorney for good advice.

Tax Law Glossary

Generation Skipping Tax The federal government seeks to tax wealth as it is transferred from generation to generation.  If you try to pass more than the current generation skipping tax exemption (i.e. skip a generation) to your grandchildren, your estate will be subject to the generation skipping tax (GST.)  Generation skipping taxes can be totally avoided with good estate planning.

Garnishment The IRS can garnish your wages to pay taxes owed.  In the context of tax law, “garnishment” means that the IRS placed a levy against your wages and your employer must take out all, but for the sum stated by the IRS, before you are paid.  The employer is required by law to send all of your paycheck, other than that small sum, to the IRS to pay your back tax bill.

Tax Arbitration “Tax arbitration” refers to the process of seeking to amicably settle a tax issue between a taxpayer and a taxing authority, typically the IRS.   The tax attorney seeks to maximize taxpayer rights and legal options.

Correspondence Audit There’s the dreaded word, “audit.”  However, a correspondence audit, while still being serious, is less scary than an in-person audit. A correspondence audit is handled all through the mail.  Typically, the tax payer receives a letter indicating that he or she may have forgotten some information or there is a request for documentation of a deduction. If you don’t respond to a correspondence audit, the IRS can assess and collect all the taxes they determine are owed.  It is never in your best interest to ignore the IRS.