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California Sales Tax Problems Lawyers

California has one of the highest sales taxes in the United States. The state’s sales taxes were once collected through the Board of Equalization, but things have changed as of 2017. Instead of being the responsibility of the BOE, a new agency called the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration was created.

Sales taxes are given to retailers who sell tangible assets in a retail store. The purpose is for retailers to pay for the ability to do business in California. Taxes for a business are measured by looking at their gross sales receipts. In addition, the CDTFA is responsible for the California Use Tax.

Several thousand people are part of the CDTFA. Before that, the majority of them worked for the BOE. They have extensive experience with ensuring compliance with California tax laws. The BOE still exists and is run by a board of five members, four of whom are elected to represent one of the districts in the state. The fifth member is the state controller. But they don’t listen to tax appeals anymore, instead deferring appeals to the official Office of Tax Appeals.

California’s tax bureaucracy is complicated, and it can be overwhelming for the average person to navigate.

Sales tax audits are initiated by the CDTFA. How the audit is done will depend on what kind of business is being audited. One example would be auditing a bar by finding out how much alcohol is in a drink, examining the company’s purchase records, and determining how much money the company made from sales through this.

Regardless of the industry, an audit will involve a basic preliminary exam. The auditor will compare the official numbers recorded in the business’s tax paperwork with the numbers in the books. They will also look for discrepancies in the business owner’s income taxes and the reported sales taxes. There are some other aspects of the business income that they might check for discrepancies, such as the resale information filed with the agency versus the number of sales the business reports in their personal logs.

The auditor will request a variety of different records to go over all of this information.

They will ask to look at the accounting books for the business. That includes ledgers, balance sheets, financial plans, records of operation, federal tax returns, state tax returns, and income statements for both the business and business owner.

Christine Twomey
Christine Twomey
2024-03-21
Just had my Divorce case settled 2 months ago after having a horrible experience with another firm. I couldn’t be happier with Claire Banks and Elizabeth Garvey with their outstanding professionalism in doing so with Spodek Law Group. Any time I needed questions answered they were always prompt in doing so with all my uncertainties after 30 yrs of marriage.I feel from the bottom of my heart you will NOT be disappointed with either one. Thanks a million.
Brendan huisman
Brendan huisman
2024-03-18
Alex Zhik contacted me almost immediately when I reached out to Spodek for a consultation and was able to effectively communicate the path forward/consequences of my legal issue. I immediately agreed to hire Alex for his services and did not regret my choice. He was able to cover my case in court (with 1 day notice) and not only was he able to push my case down, he carefully negotiated a dismissal of the charge altogether. I highly recommend Spodek, and more specifically, Alex Zhik for all of your legal issues. Thanks guys!
Guerline Menard
Guerline Menard
2024-03-18
Thanks again Spodek law firm, particularly Esq Claire Banks who stood right there with us up to the finish line. Attached photos taken right outside of the court building and the smile on our faces represented victory, a breath of fresh air and satisfaction. We are very happy that this is over and we can move on with our lives. Thanks Spodek law 🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼🙌🏼❤️
Keisha Parris
Keisha Parris
2024-03-15
Believe every single review here about Alex Z!! From our initial consultation, it was evident that Alex possessed a profound understanding of criminal law and a fierce dedication to his clients rights. Throughout the entirety of my case, Alex exhibited unparalleled professionalism and unwavering commitment. What sets Alex apart is not only his legal expertise but also his genuine compassion for his clients. He took the time to thoroughly explain my case, alleviating any concerns I had along the way. His exact words were “I’m not worried about it”. His unwavering support and guidance were invaluable throughout the entire process. I am immensely grateful for Alex's exceptional legal representation and wholeheartedly recommend his services to anyone in need of a skilled criminal defense attorney. Alex Z is not just a lawyer; he is a beacon of hope for those navigating the complexities of the legal system. If you find yourself in need of a dedicated and competent legal advocate, look no further than Alex Z.
Taïko Beauty
Taïko Beauty
2024-03-15
I don’t know where to start, I can write a novel about this firm, but one thing I will say is that having my best interest was their main priority since the beginning of my case which was back in Winter 2019. Miss Claire Banks, one of the best Attorneys in the firm represented me very well and was very professional, respectful, and truthful. Not once did she leave me in the dark, in fact she presented all options and routes that could possibly be considered for my case and she reinsured me that no matter what I decided to do, her and the team will have my back and that’s exactly what happened. Not only will I be liberated from this case, also, I will enjoy my freedom and continue to be a mother to my first born son and will have no restrictions with accomplishing my goals in life. Now that’s what I call victory!! I thank the Lord, My mother, Claire, and the Spodek team for standing by me and fighting with me. Words can’t describe how grateful I am to have the opportunity to work with this team. I’m very satisfied, very pleased with their performance, their hard work, and their diligence. Thank you team!
Anthony Williams
Anthony Williams
2024-03-12
Hey, how you guys doing? Good afternoon my name is Anthony Williams I just want to give a great shout out to the team of. Spodek law group. It is such a honor to use them and to use their assistance through this whole case from start to finish. They did everything that they said they was gonna do and if it ever comes down to it, if I ever have to use them again, hands-down they will be the first law office at the top of my list, thank you guys so much. It was a pleasure having you guys by my side so if you guys ever need them, do not hesitate to pick up the phone and give them a call.
Loveth Okpedo
Loveth Okpedo
2024-03-12
Very professional, very transparent, over all a great experience
Bee L
Bee L
2024-02-28
Amazing experience with Spodek! Very professional lawyers who take your case seriously. They treated me with respect, were always available, and answered any and all questions. They were able to help me very successfully and removed a huge stress. Highly recommend.
divesh patel
divesh patel
2024-02-24
I can't recommend Alex Zhik and Spodek Law Firm highly enough for their exceptional legal representation and personal mentorship. From the moment I engaged their services in October 2022, Alex took the time to understand my case thoroughly and provided guidance every step of the way. Alex's dedication to my case went above and beyond my expectations. His expertise, attention to detail, and commitment to achieving the best possible outcome were evident throughout the entire process. He took the time to mentor me, ensuring I understood the legal complexities involved to make informed decisions. Alex is the kind of guy you would want to have a beer with and has made a meaningful impact on me. I also want to acknowledge Todd Spodek, the leader of the firm, who played a crucial role in my case. His leadership and support bolstered the efforts of Alex, and his involvement highlighted the firm's commitment to excellence. Thanks to Alex Zhik and Todd Spodek, I achieved the outcome I desired, and I am incredibly grateful for their professionalism, expertise, and genuine care. If you're in need of legal representation, look no further than this outstanding team.

They will also ask to see documentation that verifies the information written in the books. For example, they might ask for purchase and sales invoices, contracts, supply orders, bank statements, vendor communication, rent payments, and other documentation that attests to the costs of operation and overall income.

If the business had sales that were exempt from sales taxes, they will need to provide documentation like bills of landing, exemption certificates, and resale certificates to prove the transaction was legitimate.

In addition to being asked to provide copies of your California sales tax return, you will need to give the auditor the schedules and papers used to calculate the return. Your business’s accountant should have all of this information on file.

A lot of the issues with sales taxes arise because businesses don’t keep good enough records. If you’re concerned that you might be liable for sales tax issues, you can reach out to an attorney. They will examine your records to determine whether they’re sufficient enough to stand up to an audit. If they aren’t, then the attorney can advise your CPA about what to do to keep better records in the future.

There are serious potential consequences to being found guilty of sales tax understatement. The CDTFA might take this as evidence that the business or the business owner also underpaid on their federal and state income taxes. The IRS and the state tax board in California will both be apprised of any judgments made. This can lead to new audits being started for other aspects of the business.

Because of this, it’s recommended that business owners file a dispute when their sales tax judgment is in error. You might think that it will cost less to simply pay the back taxes and move on, but that’s not true. Doing so will open you to further costly action from both the federal and state level. It’s much better to hire an attorney who can represent your interests and explain why the judgment was in error.

There are a variety of ways for an attorney to solve a tax issue after an audit. At the end of every audit, there will be an exit conference held by the auditor. The supervisor of the auditor might be in attendance. This conference is the place where the auditor will pass on their proposed taxes. Your attorney can meet with the people responsible for the audit to get your tax bill reduced.

In cases where the business owner and CDTFA can’t come to an agreement about the audit, a Notice of Determination will be filed. Your attorney can petition within 30 days of the notice being sent out. After filing a petition, you might be able to settle your case.

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