Those of you who religiously follow my newsletter (please send me an email if you need to be added to the list) know that this year I hired a wonderful paralegal straight out of undergrad, Paris. Paris started with us in the late Spring of 2023 and (tragically for us) had to leave us in December of 2023 to continue her professional journey. We asked that one of her last tasks be to let us know what she learned during her time at Faucher Law. She obliged us and as always, blew us away with her work. From a non-tax lawyer’s perspective, we’d like to share what Paris learned about tax law. -JDF

My Time at Faucher Law by Paris

Before I started at Faucher Law, I was finishing up my MSA (master of science in accounting) at San Diego State University. When I used to tell people about my accounting background, they asked if I liked tax, and my answer was always NO! Now here I am, half a year later, switching my answer: I kind of love tax! Listed below are the most surprising things I have learned at my time at Faucher Law and how they have changed my perspective on tax and bankruptcy.

Bankruptcy is not as scary as you think!

Whenever I heard the word bankruptcy before my time at Faucher Law, I would think of a deep dark hole that you could never climb out of. Now I think of it as the beginning of something great! Bankruptcy gives a person a clean slate and second chance. The hardest part of bankruptcy is accepting you need help. Once you get through that part, the benefits are incredible. Your debt is discharged, your credit score bounces back after a few months, and your stress level dissipates. Bankruptcy is not the dark hole; it’s the ladder that gets you out.

The IRS is not the bad guy.

The IRS is seen as the horrible agency that wants to take all your money and is the opposite of fun. Hearing the name IRS makes people cringe and I don’t think that should be the case! Essentially what the IRS does is make sure everyone is paying their fair amount. They’re a lot like the rest of us, trying to get our lives and systems to run right, working hard and doing their best by all of us tax-payers.

Hiring the right lawyer from the beginning makes a huge difference.

The saying “if it’s too good to be true, it probably is” is extremely prevalent in the tax and bankruptcy world. Over the past few months, people called about how they were scammed by companies that charge a small amount in the beginning, but make you spend more in the long run. Good lawyers are “expensive” for a reason. They get the job done right the first time and make sure you don’t wind up paying double because the first guy scammed you.

Bankruptcy can be quick and painless (if you’re willing)

We can only help you as much as you let us. As previously mentioned, accepting you need help can be difficult. The sooner you accept that this is for the best, the sooner it will be in the past. Willingness to gather your personal documents and responding quickly to the professionals assisting you will make this process much less stressful for everyone involved. Here at Faucher Law, we tell you what documents we need before we file so you are not stressed to get them in at the last minute. We all suffer from procrastination, but this is a part of your life that you need to be on top of.

Tax issues are a lot like fires.

When I was in undergrad, I was once told by a recruiter that “auditors are the cops while tax professionals are the firefighters.” What he meant by this was that auditors are looking for things wrong, but tax professionals are trying to find loopholes that get you out of owing a lot of money in taxes. I had never witnessed the tax side of this analogy until my time at Faucher Law. John is constantly mitigating fire risk both in and out of office. Not only is he helping new clients with their tax issues, but is also on the fire safety council in Oak Park!

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