The Mission Statement of the Tax Resolution Blog?

We created the Tax Problem Resolution Blog to aid the average person to become more discerning buyers of tax resolution and tax representation services. Please read the index of articles below to learn more about the tax resolution industry and to assist you in solving your specific tax problem.

Jay Freeborne, Enrolled Agent at Washington Tax Services, open for business since 1989

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

A Survey of 149 Tax Resolution Companies -- CONTINUOUSLY UPDATED

Here is our ongoing attempt to make a complete list of every purported Tax Resolution Company in the IRS.  We have categorized them into:

1. Companies that We Recommend Strongly. VERY SOLID ****.

2. Industry Stalwarts - Companies with Extensive Experience -- Mostly with Good Reputations. ALSO SOLID ***

3. Not Recommended - Open and Operating Companies with D to F ratings at BBB (or deserve special inclusion). TREAD CAREFULLY. *

4. New Companies - Since 2008 -- NOT QUITE SURE YET. **

5. Dead Tax Resolution Companies - R.I.P.

How do we reach our conclusions when rating tax resolution companies?  Our research and analysis is based on a few things:  first, what clients or potential clients share with us about their experiences of these companies,  second, what their BBB listing tells us about the company and third, what I read on the internet about the company - discounting of course the nature of internet complaints.   Naturally, we have a self-interest to portray Washington Tax Services, our company, as the best.  But we truly try to resist this bias as we review these companies.    When we find tax resolution companies that genuinely seem to serve people and provide value to them, we want to acknowledge them.  


1. Companies that We Recommend Strongly****:


1. Washington Tax Services, Seattle, Washington, since 1989 --  
Call us -- 1-888-282-4697

This is OUR company. Our website is HERE  We are 25 years in the business of tax resolution and representation.

Washington Tax is:

1. Affordable

2. Experienced and Knowledgeable about the Most Complex Tax issues.

3. WATAX has an Efficient Tax Resolution System Designed to Take Good Care of our Customers.

 Our A + BBB record is here:  BBB record - Washington Tax


2. Instant Tax Solutions, Idaho/Santa Monica, since November 2008.

Call them at 1-888-246-2999

You might recognize Instant Tax by their strong presence on the internet.  The good news is Instant Tax delivers on their promise.  Their customer service infrastructure is Four Enrolled Agents and four CPAs and a support staff of 32.   It is clear to me that this company is guided by integrity and honest practices.  Their BBB record verifies that:  BBB listing  Also as fellow Northwesterners, I have personally met the owners and I know that they take their client's best interest at heart.  Here's their Website.


3. Tax Defense Network  Jacksonville, Florida, since November 2007.
Call them at 1-855-233-4232

Tax Defense Network (TDN) has the enviable position of being - in my opinion - the best internet marketer of tax resolution services in the U.S.  They also are a company that clearly is in this for the long haul as demonstrated by sales representatives who conduct ethical and honest interviews with their potential customers -- rarely overpromising to get the easy sale.  Their solid BBB record is also indicative of their commitment to good service   BBB record - TDN. I have spoken extensively with management of TDN and they impress us as a very well-oiled machine.  In fact --they have an actual office - which researches every case to determine if the cases are viable - before money changes hands (!).   They only take on cases in which they can provide value and cases that they don't take on they forward to the appropriate company or professional that will.  That kind of quality control is awesome to see in this industry.

TDN markets itself better than anybody.  I can't verify this - but I think that TDN is NOW the largest company in the U.S. specializing in tax resolution.  The fact that they have grown to their massive size and maintain quality control is  not an easy feat to pull off.    Here are some of the websites where clients find TDN: Tax Relief Center  IRS Tax Settlement Tax Relief Alternatives or thru a Consumer Reviews site:  Consumer Tax Reviews Site  The Consumer Reviews site is not their entity.  However - as they are ranked #1 - there is obviously a special relationship between the two.  On a final note - TDN charges a premium for their good services, BUT with the quality of their service - I can't knock them for that.


CLICK ON THE LINKS BELOW TO SEE THE OTHER LISTS.

2. Tax Resolution Industry Stalwarts - Companies with lots of Experience and Mostly Good Reputations

3. Not Recommended --- Companies with D to F Ratings at BBB (Or who deserve special inclusion) 

4. New Companies - Since 2008 -- The Verdict is Out

5. Dead Companies: R.I.P.




22 comments:

Enrolled Agent said...

Omni in Colorado and Vero Beach are the same company, same owner-CO focuses on business clients and Vero Beach on personal clients. Don't let their BBB record fool you, they are a boiler room. Each tax rep is expected to pull in at least $30,000 per month in new money off existing clients by billing down their retainer.

Clear Creek is equally, if not more so, horrible than Omni.

Colonial is ran by one sales goon, one E.A. and one failure attorney who is high on marijuana and cocaine all day.

Check out my blog:

http://taxresolutionincolorado.blogspot.com/2010/05/blowing-whistle-on-colorado-tax.html

Nick Hartney, E.A. said...

Over the past 10 years I've worked for some of these companies in Colorado and I'll say most firms it's just a bunch of guys trying to hustle to make money, very similar to that movie boiler room-albeit with some actual services. Like many others who worked there, I found it too stessful to hustle my clients for $25,000-$30,000 each month. I prefer to handle my clients tax matters, not be a salesperson in disguise. I worked for a few other companies that said they were different but the reality is the apple does not fall far from the tree. But I do have to thank Omni as I learned a lot there (both good and bad) and now enjoy the independence of my own where I can actually put resolving my client's tax matters first.

I came across this blog from a former business partner of mine at Colonial Tax and he accused me of the above comments. To set the record straight about Colonial they do care about their clients and try to maintain a good standing with the BBB. We had a falling out after I was going through a divorce and they decided they didn't need me anymore to help them bring in deals (back in the day I was working sales because Josh didn't like cold calling-even though he was supposed to be the sales guy and John is an attorney) because we stumbled across Google adwords. Kinda funny how you can vote the guy out who started the thing because you each want a bigger cut of the pie and then have the audacity to whine about some anonymous blog posting. But oh well, what goes around comes around. I'm doing my thing and thank God that I don't have to deal with anyone else's nonsense as I am independent now.

But as far as these companies it's really just a hustle. Very similar to stock brokers. Everyone is trying to cash in and unfortunently when you have a deregualted industry you are going to attract the worst of the worst. If only Enrolled Agents where able to sell the deals this industry would be cleaned up quickly. Outside of Colorado you look at companies like JK Harris and Tax Masters and I don't know how, but they have a worse reputation than any company in Colorado and I know that it takes a lot to have a bad BBB record (from working at these companies and seeing firsthand their practices).

My advice to any taxpayer looking for help is to skip the middleman (the sales rep) and go directly to the person who will be handling your case (many firms will not allow a potential client to speak to the person who will actually work the case because they will not lie to the extent many sales closers will).
http://nickhartneyea.blogspot.com/

email: nick@patriotresolution.com
Direct phone: 720-340-4065

Anonymous said...

Titan Tax in San Diego is not an offshoot of the defunct Strategic Tax Resolutions. STR went out of business in early 2009. STR was pretty dicey too but not as hard sell as Tax Masters or American Tax Relief.

Titan Tax was founded by yet another former employee of American Tax Relief (they spread like a cancer). ATR's business model focuses so little on the actual tax resolution work that many of their sales team leaves to start a biz of their own because it seems so easy.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
marc dombrowski, EA said...

great post! Remember that cold calling is not just "suspect"-it's illegal! IRS Circular 230 clearly prohibits direct solicitation (we can email, mail, advertise-but no calls!). If someone calls you-they cannot be a EA/ CPA's/ atty-or worse- they are an atty and they are unethical.

Meet with someone local. Speak only to the EA, CPA, atty. Do research!

Informed Former Client said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Joe Mastriano said...

Rick above is on the right track. Only a licensed professional should be the one to close any case deal. A sales person is not qualified to make the professional decision and promises for results needed. Our sales person is not allowed to close a case deal, period.

kathie175 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Joe Mastriano, CPA said...

Our BBB Rating is A- not as mentioned above. We do appreciate the vote of approval.

Anonymous said...

I paid Progressive Tax Group 10k to help eliminate my tax debt. I now owe more tax than I did to start with. They really ripped me off. Now I have to start over again somwhere. Anyone got any ideas or suggestions? Cathy in Alabama

Jay Freeborne - Tax Resolution Issues said...

Cathy, give me a call tomorrow at 1-866-525-7302

Joe Mastriano, CPA said...

Our BBB Rating is now A+ with no complaints for Joe Mastriano, CPA

Joe HIll said...

I read through all your lists and can't believe you left us off each list. I would have thought the oldest Tax Resolutions Company in the US would have appeared on one of the four.

Tax Solutions, Inc. has been around since 1983 and does in fact have an A+ rating with the BBB. Wow, 28 years in business and still an A+ rating? It just goes to show you it can be done.

I have 5 former Senior Revenue Officers on staff, 1 CPA, 1 trainee EA with 6 years experience, 2 of the ROs were OIC specialists, and of course our support staff.

I have seen these companies come and go over the last 28 years and with most of them, I don't know how they sleep at night. No ethics whatsoever. I could go on and on about what I have seen in this business over this time frame, but taxpayers keep falling for their lies.

We do have a web site that I consider very informative to potential clients. You can find us at taxsolutionsinc.com and you can find me at 901-821-9333. The physical address is 752 Crossover Lane, Memphis, TN 38117.

Let me know if you add us to your list.

Joe Hill, President

Jassen L. Bowman said...

I'm #27 on your "new company" list -- Tax Help HQ. Thanks for the mention and what I'll take as a vote of confidence. Based on your comments, I added my own name and a brief bio to my about page, connected to my personal Twitter account rather than the "company" account, so now tax help seekers can read about my figure skating. :)

I'm an EA, and have been "in the biz" for about 4 years. I also have an attorney that works with me that handles certain cases. We are a small shop (it's just the two of us), and don't actually work a large volume of cases -- we only bring on board 2 to 4 new clients per month.

I spent three years working for a medium-sized national firm in Colorado, which was one of the numerous Omni spinoffs. They were a good outfit that did good, honest work for their clients, despite utilizing the boiler room telemarketing approach.

Anyway, I hope that clears up any question marks about who Tax Help HQ is.

Sincerely,

Jassen Bowman

Jim Brown said...

Freedom Tax Relief.com: We're number one and we know it!

As a tax attorney and vice-president of FTR I've been with the company since our first client eight years ago and we now have completed case number 10,000.

We have a large staff with more licensed agents per client of any US company doing this work.

We have a good BBB rating with only one complaint per 500 clients.

We use a two-step contracting method that insures clients pay only for the tax resolution that the will qualify. No client gets jammed up paying for an Offer in Compromise that won't work. And, on the Offers we do complete; they get accepted at the highest percentage of the entire industry.

I thank Jay Freebourne for his nice website here but I've got to fault him on not recognizing the #1company in the United States resolving tax debt. Hopefully this note will draw his attention to our quiet company doing great things for so many clients throughout the United States.

Jim Brown, VP- Freedom Tax Relief.com 800.455.6829 x-16238 email me at jbrown@freedomtaxrelief.com

Anonymous said...

The web site listed for U.S. Tax Liberty expired and/or was not renewed as of 9/7/2011.

Some other firms not in your list

Newman Tax & Resolution in Temecula, CA

Top Tax Defenders in Houston, TX

H&R Block Audit Services

Heidi B. said...

Hello, I just wanted to make you aware of a big issue with a company that you have on your list of "recommendations with reservations". The company I am referring to is Omni Tax. I happen to know from a person who tried to use their services that they are crooks. You mention that they have an A+ rating with the BBB and so they must have a good return policy with disgruntled clients. I believe that many of their disgruntled clients are too scared to come forward about a refund because this company uses extortion like tactics to keep them from doing so. My friend gave a huge chunk of money to Omni Tax upfront and then they were tricked in to giving them postdated checks for future payments, but was told those checks would only be used after they were contacted to make sure they had the money. Then Omni requested all the boat loads of paper work that it takes to make an offer to the IRS and proceeded to give a lowball offer to the IRS. This offer was so lowball the IRS came back with a counter offer of over 90% higher. Of course the IRS would not take an offer like that and my friend tried to tell Omni that before the offer was made. Omni told my friend that they would have to pay another $5000 if they wanted them to make another offer. Then without nofifying my friend they tried to deposit one of the postdated checks, which of course bounced because they didn't have an extra $750 lying around in their account. Ummm...it doesn't take a genius to figure out what happened next. My friend called them upset about the bounced check and let Omni know they wanted to get a refund. "Oh...I'm sorry you want your money back, ok then, how about we just turn you in for bad check writing." Yeah, they did that...used the postdated checks as leverage against my friend telling him they would put him in jail for that. They knew exactly how to play this from the beginning. They knew they could charge a desperate man a huge amount of money, get him to give them something with leverage over him, then lowball the IRS fully knowing they wouldn't accept the offer and then start all over and then try to get more money from the client to make another bogus offer. Then if there is any trouble from the client...just get out the leverage and use that. They have this down to a science! I just thought you might want to know this information. My friend does not want this sort of thing to happen to anyone else and it might be a good idea for you to do a little more research about them. They don't deserve a status on your blog as recommended, even if it is with reservations!

Anonymous said...

The Juceam Group is run by the same operators from the Roni Deutch Law Firm, shut down by authorities

Dick Norton, E. A. said...

Hi Jay, I just wanted to comment that I have reviewed your site and particularly found useful your assessment of companies in our business. I worked for the IRS for over 34 years - my last 19 as the Associate Chief of Appeals in Los Angeles. I can tell you that taxpayers who retain unqualified representives most always end up in a worse situation - due either to (1) having wasted precious resources for ineffective representation, or (2) having irritated or frustated the IRS or State agency as a consequence of their representative's failure to timely and professionally respond to the agency requests. Thanks for making your analysis available to all who are searching for help. I hope to meet you at a forum or seminar some day. Dick Norton, E. A.

Paul S. said...

Thank you for the Tax Tiger honorable mention. We are proud of our proven track record in the industry over the past 11 years, consistently maintaining our A+ BBB rating. We are a faith-based organization, committed to serving our customers, and our highly competitive rates are in-line with the value and service we provide.
Paul Swanston, COO

Anonymous said...

I am a former employee of Phoenix Financial in Colorado. They will deliver their services, however once lunch time hits I know for a fact that the openers as they are called go and get drunk. Many of these openers are under the age of 21.

Mr Jones said...

Washington Tax Services
I give them props, I called with a tax issue..we owe $13,500 this year because of a one time income hike.
he was honest said they can not do much for us. Said to wait till we receive the letter from IRS and then call to setup a "streamline payment plan" and that would most likely be around $200 a month. He advised us to pay it off as quickly as possible.
That advice was free. I previously called 20/20 tax and they wanted $3,000 to start our case.
Im glad I called Washington Tax Services..for my situation they were admirable and straight forward.