Tax Court in Elk Grove, California

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Tax Court is a legal forum designed particularly to resolve claims and disputes that arise under federal and (sometimes) state tax law.

Federal tax issues are overseen by the United States Tax Court, which has branches all over the U.S. So, the U.S. Tax Court almost certainly has a courthouse in or around Elk Grove, California.

The U.S. Tax Court is where disagreements arising under federal tax law are resolved, if the tax debt in question has not already been paid. The U.S. District Court, which is the federal court of general jurisdiction, can only hear tax cases after the tax has been paid. This rule is meant to guarantee that as many tax issues as possible are actually decided in tax court, rather than the overworked District Courts.

Tax Court Procedure in Elk Grove, California

Any claim dealing with federal tax law in Elk Grove, California can end up in tax court. Most often, a dispute ends up in tax court when the government claims that someone has not paid all of the taxes that they are legally obligated to pay. If the taxpayer disputes the factual basis of the allegation, or believes the IRS has misinterpreted the law, U.S. Tax Courts have to determine those issues.

U.S. Tax Court judges are assigned by the President. Their terms of office are legally set at 15 years. Nonetheless, the vast majority of tax court judges are simply assigned again when their terms run out, and there is no limit on the number of 15-year terms they can serve. As a practical matter, thus, Tax Court judges effectively serve life terms.

U.S. tax courts are distinct in that individuals who are not licensed to practice law in California, or any other U.S. jurisdiction, are allowed to represent clients before tax court. Non-lawyers who want to practice before the Tax Court do have to take an exam demonstrating that they have a good knowledge of tax law. Typically, non-lawyers who practice before the tax courts are experienced accountants. However, licensed attorneys can practice before tax courts without taking the special exam.

Most often, a resident of Elk Grove, California will find themselves in tax court because the relevant tax authority (usually the IRS), suspects that they have not paid all of the taxes that they are required to pay. To initiate a legal action against the taxpayer, the IRS will send them a letter laying out its allegations. Once this is received, the taxpayer has a moderate period of time (about 90 days) to go to the nearest U.S. tax court and respond. If you find yourself in this position, and want to dispute the allegations against you, you MUST file a response in a tax court in a timely manner. If you don't, you can easily lose your right to ever dispute those allegations again.

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Do I Need a Elk Grove, California Tax Attorney?

Although federal tax court allows, under some circumstances, non-lawyers to represent taxpayers, the practice of tax law is extremely complicated and specialized. Many attorneys who practice tax law do not practice in any other area.

If you have to go to tax court for whatever reason, you should almost certainly speak with a reputable tax attorney in Elk Grove, California. Even though some non-lawyers are technically permitted to represent you in tax court, there are distinct advantages to hiring a lawyer, even if a non-attorney can provide you with competent representation. The main advantage is the fact that all attorneys are tightly regulated by their state bar associations, and if they botch your case, you may have more legal recourse against an attorney than you would against a non-attorney.

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Life in Elk Grove

Elk Grove, California is a city in Sacramento County, located just south of Sacramento, the state capital. It currently has a population of about 153,000 people. 

Elk Grove was founded in 1850, as a stage coach stop, around which the town initially developed. 

Modernly, Elk Grove is generally considered a bedroom community of Sacramento. This means that it is mostly residential, with its residents commuting to Sacramento for their jobs. Because it is the capital of the largest state in the country, many state employees, in a wide range of industries, work in Sacramento, but live in Elk Grove. The State of California employs a large number of Elk Grove, California attorneys, who perform a wide variety of functions.

Of course, many Elk Grove attorneys also work in private practice. So, the residents of Elk Grove, California who need a lawyer will almost certainly be able to find a capable attorney who has experience in the relevant area of law.

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