Taxaphobia – The Fear of Taxes

“The nation should have a tax system that looks like someone designed it on purpose.”

~William Simon

 

Why are people so afraid of the subject of tax?  Everyone has to pay them, some how or another.  It doesn’t help AT ALL to plead ignorance.  I’ve been noticing an upward trend the last few years about people who just “assume” to be knowledgeable about taxes.  If you dig deeper you’ll find that there were questions that were never asked.  Or somebody did something at another company and thought the same situation applies.  I could go on and on…

Taxes are something you don’t want to mess with!  You don’t have to become an expert, but at least you should ask an expert.  It’s hard enough dealing with US taxing laws, but when you start dealing with cross-country laws, export/import taxes, goods and services taxes, labor regulations, etc.  It’s an entirely different world that speaks a different language.  Please do your homework!  Your President/CEO/CFO will thank you for keeping him out of jail.

 

Here are a few sources I’ve picked up over the years that have become invaluable in terms of tax help:

  • Your local Small Business Association – they usually have retired professionals that were once experts and can help/advise you on a variety of subjects.
  • The IRS – calling them up is not a difficult process compared to the customer service situations at other companies. They too have professionals that can usually answer most general questions or could lead you to your answer.
  • The Internet – many networking sites often share advice or situations that you could use to determine if your situation is a close match of not. If not, there are often professionals you could ask in a discussion format and this can be a life saver!
  • Your tax department – most large companies have a tax department or at least a tax director. They are “usually” not evil, and often glad to answer questions. Like most people, they would rather answer a few questions then clean up a big mess later!
  • Law firms – if you can afford it, there are law firms that specialize in complex tax matters. If may be best to hire a firm to distinguish your best alternatives.
  • Research – you can find the answer to almost everything with a little elbow work. You may not understand it, but it’s at least a good starting point and a little knowledge never hurts!
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  1. Think your offshore tax haven is protected? Think again… « Buds Blog Site - July 7, 2008

    […] the major tax reporting services carry stories of IRS enforcement actions against individuals (and most likely still stealing your breakfast cereal). These taxpayers are typically losing in court when they try to litigate their positions, too.  […]

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