Capital Gains Tax Issues

By: Paula Straub

A good CPA is worth their weight in gold. A cracker jack attorney can save your bacon when it comes to upholding your legal rights and due justice. What happens when you ask them for assistance with something like your capital gains tax problem when you're ready to sell your highly appreciated asset?

Chances are, you may get incorrect or incomplete advice which may result in the unnecessary loss of a lot of cash and income growth potential.

I am a great believer in working closely with competent CPA's and Attorneys. As a matter of fact, many times it is an absolute necessity. To complete a good Capital Gains Tax Saving Strategy, the Financial Advisor, CPA and Attorney should all be in harmony so that the client can hang onto as much gain as possible.

That said, an incompetent or unknowledgeable professional can really cause great financial harm. Just because someone passed their CPA or Bar exam at one point does assure that they are well versed on capital gains treatment. A good professional will either admit to their lack of knowledge, or take the initiative to do the proper research to bone up on the subject.. One may have to pay for their research time, however, as most do nothing for free.

Case in point; I have a client in the mid-west. She has been having great difficulty finding a good tax professional in her area (fairly rural).

She needs a good professional, as we are considering doing partial 1031 exchanges with her property. The first person she called told her she had no options but to pay capital gains tax on sale.

I set out to find her someone that knew what they are doing. I contacted a "find a good CPA" type of site and told them what I was looking for. They gave me a name and I called them. The fellow I spoke with seemed to be on the same page, so I had him contact my client.

I then got an email from my client. Someone from his office had contacted her. She told my client she was knowledgeable on capital gains treatment and proceeded to give my client blatantly incorrect tax advice without knowing what she was doing or taking a complete financial workup.

I called the CPA I talked to and relayed what the "assistant" said. He promised to contact my client and straighten out the misunderstanding. Then, much to my dismay, he contacted the client and gave more wrong information!

I am not a CPA or licensed tax professional. I can go to the IRS website to verify information I am forwarding, however. I proceeded to find the correct information and email it in writing to both my client and the "tax professional".

Needless to say, my client will not be using this particular CPA. What a complete waste of precious time and energy, however. This is exactly what I was trying to avoid in the first place.

I have had very similar experiences with attorneys. They may be great at some things they do on a regular basis. However, many will not do their research on something they are not familiar with before dismissing it out of hand. This is a great disservice and can cost a client a huge sum of proceeds.

The moral of this story is: make sure you are consulting with experienced and knowledgeable professionals when exploring capital gains tax strategies. I have found that if all parties are on a conference call, the correct information can be discussed amongst all, and if there are conflicting opinions, everyone involved can produce the correct information from a qualified source and disburse it to all parties.

A professional team is crucial when implementing a capital gains tax strategy. Don't take the advice of someone who dismisses something out of hand without giving specific reasons to both you and the party recommending the strategy.

After all, if you needed brain surgeryFree Web Content, you wouldn't go to your general practitioner would you?

Top Searches on
Taxes
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 

» More on Taxes