Frequently asked questions

WHAT IS A BOARD-CERTIFIED TAX LAW SPECIALIST?

Sean M. Golding is a Board-Certified Tax Law Specialist. There are more than 200,000 attorneys in California  , and tens of thousands of them practice in some area of tax. Whether they are full time tax attorneys or they practice tax law as part of a bigger practice — tax law is everywhere. In California alone, there are less than 350  Board-Certified Tax SpecialistsLess than 1% of attorneys nationwide are Board-Certified  .

Why?

Because the test is brutal, and the applicant must also meet rigorous ethical and experience requirements as well.


WHAT TYPE OF TAX CREDENTIALS & EXPERIENCE SHOULD AN OFFSHORE TAX LAWYER HAVE?

A Tax Lawyer Specialist in Offshore Disclosure will generally have all five (5) of these main qualifications:

20+Years Attorney experience

-Extensive Audits, Litigation & Trial experience

-Board Certified Tax Law Specialist

-Master’s of Tax Law (LL.M.)

-Dually-licensed as an Attorney/EA or Attorney/CPA 

These credentials are considered “pre-requisites” for the effective practice of offshore disclosure law.


WHAT IS A REDUCED-FEE INITIAL CONSULTATION?

We offer reduced-fee consultations in 30-minute and 60-minute blocks. Our Attorneys will discuss your case with you in detail, including evaluating the facts, discussing potential strategies, and answering your questions.

DO YOU OFFER FREE CONSULTATIONS?

No. These days, most free initial consultations are sales-pitches designed to prey upon taxpayer fear. It is referred to as fear-mongering or scare-mongering.

DO YOU OFFER SECOND OPINIONS ON OFFSHORE TAX COMPLIANCE & DISCLOSURE?

Yes, at the reduced-fee rates that we offer for our consultations. 

Since the requirements for the streamlined program and delinquency procedures are generally less onerous than traditional voluntary disclosure, it seems like every attorney with a few years of attorney experience and a handful of streamlined cases under their belt is suddenly an “expert.”  

Many of these attorneys who “claim” to specialize in this area of tax and law have no prior attorney experience, have never prepared tax returns with PFIC or related issues, and either just struck out on their own, or have non-legal experience they are trying to substitute for lack of litigation, trial and tax law experience. 


IS PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE WORKING AT THE IRS IMPORTANT?

The IRS has nearly 100,000 employees, so it depends.

Was the attorney a prior senior offshore disclosure lawyer for the IRS? If so, it may be beneficial.

The main issue in today’s marketplace are the attorneys who could not get hired as attorneys for the IRS and worked in an  entry-level role, such as an examiner, agent or “IRS specialist” — none of which require any legal or tax background.   They then try to use this basic audit and examination experience to  mislead clients about IRS offshore disclosure, Kovel Letters and how the  process works — which then compromises the client’s entire offshore disclosure submission.


WHAT DOES FLAT-FEE, FULL-SERVICE MEAN?

We are a Team of Tax Attorneys and Tax Professionals. For each case we accept, Golding & Golding representation includes tax and information return preparation (foreign trusts, FBAR, FATCA, foreign gifts, etc.), Legal Preparation, Legal Representation, IRS follow-up and representation in an exam stemming from the submission. In other words,  we got your back!

WHAT IF I ALREADY HIRED ANOTHER TAX ATTORNEY?

This is not a problem, and is becoming a question we hear all too often. The Client always has the right to terminate their attorney, receive back their documents and unused portion of their fees, and hire another attorney.

WHAT IF I FIND YOUR CONTENT ON ANOTHER ATTORNEY’S WEBSITE?

We do not provide any other attorneys authorization to post our articles. Mr. Golding is a nationally-recognized author. He is a Tax & Legal Columnist for various periodicals & journals in the U.S. and abroad, and has been featured in various articles, including  Forbes. If you see our writing on any other attorney websites, please drop us a quick email and let us know. We appreciate it!

WHY IS YOUR TELEPHONE NUMBER NOT LISTED ON THE WEBSITE?

We do not accept unsolicited calls. Our administrative staff schedules initial consultations by email to ensure there are no miscommunications, especially in light of the fact that we receive inquiries from clients in over 80 countries. Once a client retains Golding & Golding, they have full (and direct) access to the staff members assigned to their case.