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Tax Hardship Center review

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Owe money to the IRS? Get help settling your debt.

If you need help navigating the legal minefield that comes with owing back taxes, you may want to turn to Tax Hardship Center. It covers a variety of tax-related issues and has a positive reputation from former customers. But costs and fees aren’t provided up front, so you may have to call to learn more.

Tax Hardship Center details

  • Services offered. Negotiation and settlement, offer in compromise, tax liens and levies, wage garnishment, currently not collectible, penalty abatement, installment agreements, tax preparation.
  • Free consultation. Sign up through an online form.
  • Costs. Starting at $495.
  • Types of debt accepted. Personal and business tax debt.
  • Minimum debt considered. $10,000 — though sometimes debts of $5,000 are accepted.
  • Typical turnaround. A few weeks to a year.
  • Ratings, accreditation and memberships. A+ BBB rating; ASTPS, NAEA, CSEA, BBB accreditations; authorized IRS e-file provider.
  • Direct or third-party negotiations. Direct.
  • Service availability. All 50 states.
  • Free resources or tools. Taxpayer bill of rights, downloadable tax forms.
  • Customer service. Phone, email, fax, mail, Facebook.
  • 14-day money-back guarantee. Applies to the $495 pre-resolution fee.

How much does it cost?

Costs start at $495 to begin the pre-resolution process, though this comes with a 14-day money-back guarantee if you’re not happy with how things progress. During this time, you’ll sit down with a tax professional to discuss your case and the options available. Additional fees depend on the type of tax debt relief program you decide to go with.

How much could I save with Tax Hardship Center?

It depends on your specific circumstances and how much you owe. A representative for the company mentioned it helped some customers save nearly 99% off their tax bill, though this is rare. Other case studies available on Tax Hardship Center’s website show situations where customers received settlements of just $100, despite owing thousands in back taxes.

The tax professional assigned to your case should be able to give you an estimate of how much you might be able to save.

What are the pros and cons of Tax Hardship Center?

Pros

  • Works with a variety of tax issues. Whether you’re struggling with wage garnishment or need help filing an appeal with the IRS, Tax Hardship Center offers a variety of services to help.
  • 14-day money-back guarantee. If you aren’t happy with how your case is progressing with Tax Hardship Center, it can return the initial $495 fee within two weeks of signing up.
  • Good reviews and multiple accreditations. Not only does Tax Hardship Center receive lots of positive reviews from former customers, but it’s also accredited with several professional tax organizations to prove its authority in the field.

Cons

  • Can be expensive. It costs $495 just to get through the door of Tax Hardship Center. How much you ultimately end up paying depends on the amount you owe, the type of service you need and how complex your case is.
  • Barebones website. Despite providing a list of the types of tax debt relief services it offers, you’ll have to call to learn about costs and how long the process could take.
  • Only works with tax debt. If you’re also struggling with other types of debt — like credit cards or medical bills — you’ll need to find a different debt relief provider to help with those issues.

What is Tax Hardship Center?

Founded in 2012 and based in Westlake Village, California, Tax Hardship Center specializes in helping individuals and businesses deal with both state and federal tax debt issues. It provides tax debt negotiation and settlement, legal advice and tax preparation services. But if you’re looking for other types of debt relief, you’re out of luck: Tax Hardship Center only works with tax debt.

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What do customers say about Tax Hardship Center?

While Tax Hardship Center doesn’t have a ton of reviews, what’s out there is positive as of April 2019. It’s accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and receives an A+ rating — with no complaints and multiple 5-star reviews. On Trustpilot, it earns a 9.4 out of 10 rating based on 26 customer reviews. Overall, people are happy with its quick turnaround and personalized service.

Despite this positive lean, keep in mind that this is based on a limited number of reviews — all of which were left in the last year. You should still take the time to compare your options and speak to a customer service rep to get a full picture of the debt relief process.

Is it safe to use Tax Hardship Center?

In general, yes. Tax Hardship Center doesn’t require you to enter any sensitive personal information online, and all of its pages are secure. It also has a taxpayer bill of rights so you can stay informed while seeking tax debt relief.

However, it only provides a basic privacy policy that covers how your information is handled, but not the specific security measures in place to protect it. If you decide to use Tax Hardship Center’s services, you may want to confirm how it keeps your information confidential before you share anything sensitive.

How do I get started?

You can sign up by calling Tax Hardship Center at 877-829-7099 or entering some basic information on its website. Follow these steps to begin the process online:

  1. Click the Go to Site button on this page to be redirected to Tax Hardship Center’s website.
  2. Click Get Help Today.
  3. Enter your full name, phone number, email address and how much you owe.
  4. Select Contact Us.

I’ve signed up. What happens next?

Once Tax Hardship Center receives your request, it contacts you to discuss your current situation. You can expect to go through the following steps:

  1. Tax Hardship Center reviews your case and discusses your options through a free consultation.
  2. If you decide to sign up for its service, your tax consultant contacts the IRS on your behalf and starts working on your case.
  3. Your case will be negotiated with the IRS, following a timeline outlined by your tax professional.

3 tips to make the program a smart financial move

Decide to sign up for tax debt relief? Here are a few pointers to ensure you get the most of the program:

  1. Avoid taking on more debt. If you’re already struggling to pay back taxes, try not to add to your debt load. Instead, focus on cutting down your expenses and developing healthy financial habits that will benefit you in the long run.
  2. Stick to your budget. To keep up with your payments and avoid liens against your income or property, try to stay within the budget you and your tax professional set up.
  3. Remain in good standing with the IRS. Once you finish the debt relief process, Tax Hardship Center will go over how you can stay in good standing with the IRS to stay clear of future tax issues in the future.

Bottom line

Tax Hardship Center can help with a variety of tax-related debt issues for both individuals and businesses in all 50 states. It doesn’t work with other types of debt, though, and comes with a steep initial fee.

Struggling with credit card debt or medical bills, on top of your back taxes? You may want to consider another debt relief provider instead.

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