Areas of Practice

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BANK LEVIES/WAGE GARNISHMENTS:

These are the actions that the common taxpayer fears the most. Imagine going to your bank account or getting your check and you find that it is significantly lower than it should be!

The IRS will send you collection notices prior to levying your account or garnishing your wages. It is imperative to call The Law Firm of Keith A. Cothroll before you are levied or garnished so that we can work with the IRS to come up with a resolution that works for you. However, if you do receive a levy or garnishment, do not worry! We can work with the IRS on your behalf to remove levies or garnishments.

IMPORTANT NOTE ON BANK LEVIES: The bank will hold your funds for 21 days before releasing the money to the IRS. Once the IRS receives it, short of extreme circumstances, it will nearly be impossible to get the money back. So, if you receive a levy notice, call without delay The Law Firm of Keith A. Cothroll to help you with your notice.

AUDIT REPRESENTATION
The IRS audit is the lottery that no one wants to win. If you are selected for an audit, it is important that you GET TAX ATTORNEY REPRESENTATION. The IRS audit is an amendment of your return in their favor. The sole purpose of the audit is for the revenue agent to look for deductions to disallow and impose large amounts of penalties and interest against you. They will disallow deductions that you are entitled to take under the IRS rules. They will ask for items that they are not entitled to. You need EXPERIENCED TAX REPRESENTATION to guide you through this ordeal.
If you receive any correspondence from the IRS regarding an audit, DO NOT CALL THEM FIRST. The Law Firm of Keith A. Cothroll will argue for every deduction that you are entitled to under the Internal Revenue Code and its regulations. We will file an appeal and if necessary, a lawsuit.
If you are currently in an audit and have received a report, DO NOT SIGN THE REPORT without contacting The Law Firm of Keith A. Cothroll first! Mr. Cothroll will review the report and consult you to determine if there are additional deductions that should have been allowed by the examiner.
OFFERS IN COMPROMISE:

The IRS has a program that will allow you to settle with them for an amount less than what you owe. They do not settle for, “pennies on the dollar”, but rather based on your ability to pay. Here is where you need competent TAX ATTORNEY representation because the IRS scrutinizes offers in compromise very closely. They will look at your income, assets and household expenses to determine your future ability to pay. If you file an offer in compromise by yourself, you may accept their determination without knowing that their determination is not always right. The IRS can find that you earn more income that you do or disallow an expense that should be allowed. The difference between an accepted offer and a rejected offer can be based on a few dollars. The Law Firm of Keith A. Cothroll can prepare your offer and ensure that you are treated fairly in the offer process.

TAX PREPARATION:

It’s very important to file all your tax returns. See the substitute return tab for one reason why. It’s also important to file your returns because failure to do so can create a criminal case against you for evasion of tax depending on the circumstances. At the Law Firm of Keith A. Cothroll, we can prepare individual, business and employment taxes to keep you compliant with the IRS.

NOTICE OF DEFICIENCY:
A notice of deficiency is the final report of your audit before it becomes final and forwarded to IRS collections and its procedures. Once it is filed, you have a 90-day window to agree to the report or file a US Tax Court petition. This 90-day window is extremely important because it is extremely difficult to reopen the audit after this period is over. The IRS does have audit reconsideration procedures, but after the 90 days is over, your audit is assessed, and they will start to bill you. The audit reconsideration process takes months if not years to complete. In the meantime, your tax bill will be due, and the IRS collections will not wait for your case to be completed before imposing levies and garnishments. So, if you do receive this notice call without delay The Law Firm of Keith A. Cothroll so that we can continue to fight your audit!

 

IDENTITY THEFT:

Identity Theft is a new, but very large part of the typical reasons why taxpayers run afoul of the IRS. With all the computer hacks and other breaches of security, taxpayers can find themselves receiving bills from the IRS for income that they never earned! Identity theft typically involves cases where a tax return was filed fraudulently on your behalf or someone has used your social security number to earn income from another party. In either case, the IRS does have procedures to remedy your problem. However, it does involve specific proof and paperwork that you’ll need TAX ATTORNEY representation for. At the Law Firm of Keith A. Cothroll, we are experienced with identity theft issues and can help you get the relief you need.

LIENS:

Liens against your home and assets are commonly filed by the IRS against tax balances that you owe. These liens can be a real headache if you want to buy or sell a home or get a line of credit because they attach to your credit report and property. Liens can be removed through a lien discharge or offer in compromise.  Otherwise, it is very difficult to do. The IRS will automatically file liens if collection notices continue to be ignored so it’s very important to read those when you get them. If you do get a lien, you’ll want to call the TAX ATTORNEY at the Law Firm of Keith A. Cothroll.

SUBSTITUTE RETURNS/BACK TAXES:

If you fail to file your tax returns, the IRS will file them for you by using all the w-2s and 1099’s submitted to them by third parties. You never want the IRS to file the return for you! The IRS will only file the return with income information and use a single filing status regardless of your actual filing status and any deductions you could normally take. This results in a severely inflated tax return that you will owe money on! Once this return is filed, the IRS will send collection notices and file liens, levies and garnishments if ignored.

If you failed to file a return, you’ll want someone who can file the return with all the deductions that are due to you! At the Law Firm of Keith A. Cothroll, we can file your missing returns and work out an affordable payment arrangement for you if you owe.

BUSINESS/PAYROLL TAX PROBLEMS:

The IRS has an entire division, the small business/self-employed, devoted to auditing businesses and enforcing the filing of 941 returns.  Enforcement of 941 returns is where businesses get into a lot of trouble. If you fail to keep up with your federal deposits and fail to file your 941 returns, the IRS will require you to file those with penalties and interest. Additionally, YOU COULD BE PERSONALLY LIABLE to the IRS for a trust fund penalty for failure to pay into FICA and social security. This penalty is against your personal assets.

All hope is not lost! You should call an experienced tax attorney at the Law Firm of Keith A. Cothroll to represent you on behalf of the IRS’s aggressive tactics. But don’t delay! Once enforcement procedures with a revenue officer begin, they will levy bank accounts and your contractors until the tax is paid in full and you are compliant.

MORE EMPLOYMENT TAX ISSUES:

Worker Classification

The IRS has recently ramped up their efforts to “correct” worker misclassifications especially in the construction industry.  When the IRS selects your business for an audit, they will reclassify your 1099 workers as w-2 employees and impose 940/941 requirements as well as trust fund penalties for failure to pay FICA and social security taxes. This leads to large amounts of taxes, interest and penalties!

The IRS uses tricky and complex tax rules that are very confusing so it’s imperative to contact a tax attorney at The Law Firm of Keith A. Cothroll to represent you in the audit to make sure that the IRS is classifying your workers correctly.

Voluntary Classification Settlement Program

Sometimes it is beneficial to allow the IRS to reclassify some of your workers. This program provides taxpayers with the opportunity to voluntarily reclassify a worker as an employee. The main reason why a taxpayer would agree to the program would be to receive partial relief from federal employment taxes which are due because of any misclassified periods of employment.

Again, the tax attorneys at the Law Firm of Keith A. Cothroll can guide you through the correct decision to make should you get ensnared by an audit such as this.

If you are not under audit, then the Law Firm of Keith A. Cothroll can also advise you whether you have classified your workers correctly and to file the correct paperwork to avoid any issues with the IRS.

BUSINESS PLANNING/AUDIT DEFENSE

The best defense against an audit is to understand what the IRS usually looks for in an audit and to correct your mistakes before the IRS comes knocking on your door. No one can prevent an audit, but there are steps that can be taken to at least minimize any potential damage should one occur.

We at the Law Firm of Keith A. Cothroll can advise you on a myriad of topics to assist you with the organization and planning of your business including:
* Filing paperwork with the Secretary of State to organize Corporations, Partnerships, LLC’s, LP’s and all   other legal entities in the State of Texas.
* Reinstating entities that have not kept up with their state franchise taxes or other requirements to be in good standing with the Secretary of State.
* Consulting with new businesses to determine what entity to be organized under and what tax return to file.

*Providing general accounting principles to help businesses report their income and expenses accurately to the IRS and State.

The Law Firm of Keith A. Cothroll serves Houston, Katy, Conroe, Woodlands, Galveston all surrounding counties and Texas.

Law Firm of Keith Cothroll

Office Address:

2000 S. Dairy Ashford, Suite 298A
Houston, Texas 77077

Here to help you.

Correspondence Address:

 P.O. Box 820805 
Houston, Texas 77282

Contact me today !

Phone: + (281) 406-0209
Fax:      + (832) 550-2140

Email: kcothroll@cothlaw.com