Taxes can be complicated. That’s why many people choose to hire a tax professional to handle it all for them. But, choosing the right kind of professional can become confusing in and of itself. There are so many financial specializations in regard to tax that may leave people unsure of exactly what kind of specialist they need.
That’s why we decided to shed some light on the difference between a CPA tax accountant and a tax attorney. They are both highly skilled specialists in the field that can help you with your taxes. Sometimes, their services overlap, other times they don’t. That’s why it’s important to get a clear understanding of which one is right for you based on your needs. So, let’s start.
What Is a CPA Tax Accountant?
CPAs are certified professional accountants, as their name suggests. They are highly educated with 5 years of business degree, they’ve passed the CPA exam, and they have continuing education every 3 years. Their extensive education encompasses a versatile range of accounting fields which means they can help you with most aspects of your finance.
A CPA is the best option with tax preparation, estate planning,investment, real estate, and finding the best business model for you. They know the law down to a T, so they’ll help you minimize your tax liability while abiding by the law. CPAs can also help you with audits, should you ever be called in for one.
When should you hire a CPA? The more money you have coming in, the more you need a CPA. If you own a business, are looking to invest, own multiple real estate properties, have multiple and/or foreign accounts, are divorced, or have children – you should call a CPA. The right CPA firm will find the right solution for you short-term and long-term so you can reap all the benefits.
What Is a Tax Attorney?
Tax attorneys, on the other hand, are legal professionals with law degrees. They have passed the bar and their specialization lies in the legal aspect of tax. While their specialities lie in the tax department, their field of operating is a legal one as opposed to a planning or accounting one. Tax attorneys are there to help you settle any disputes you might have with the law.
While it’s true that a CPA can be by your side and of help to you in case you’re called by the IRS for an audit, a tax attorney would be a better option. Tax attorneys are dispute-oriented and they know the law and each new update. So if your need for a tax professional is because you’re in trouble with the law regarding tax – get yourself a tax attorney.
If you’re facing an audit or a probable punishment, owe lots of back taxes, or need help with unified returns or account levies, you should opt for a tax attorney. Another one of tax attorney advantages is that they are bound by law to confidentiality, unlike the CPAs. That means that your tax attorney can’t be forced to testify against you in a court of law.
What’s the Difference Between a CPA Accountant and a Tax Attorney?
The main difference lies in the tax attorney’s CPA accountant requirements, credentials, and the occasions they are for.
CPAs specialize in providing financial and tax plans to minimize your tax liability and helping you out of a possible audit. While the tax attorneys are disputed oriented professionals whom you should call if you are even in legal troubles regarding your taxes.
Hope we’ve helped clear that up! And we also hope you know which one of the two you should call regarding your tax needs.