Dick Norton, EA - Tax Resolution Specialist

23837 Sarda Road
Santa Clarita, CA 91355
(818) 842-5927

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Please be sure to check out the Technical Issues page for help on frequently asked questions. If you recently received an IRS or FTB notice, do not ignore it! Often, there are deadlines for taking certain actions, including appeal of proposed assessments or enforced collection. We welcome the opportunity to help you resolve your tax controversy with the IRS or State of California tax agencies.


Dick Norton, EAWelcome to my website.   At the outset, I get comments that my site is "old school" in design.  I know that is not cell phone friendly, so I do recommend that it be viewed on a computer or IPAD.  I have a company developing a more user friendly (and more modern) website.  It is actually active on the web (www.dicknortonea.com), but it is not finished.  So, unless you are on a cell phone, you may prefer to stay on this website!

OK - time to get serious.  First and foremost, I am a retired IRS Associate Chief ofAppeals - offering my assistance to clients in matters of representation (audits, collectons and appeals), consultation, personal income tax preparation, and litigation support (expert witness).   I spent 34 years in the IRS working in the collection, examination, and appeals functions.  In my opinion, only a small percentage of tax professionals possess such comprehensive experience. 

There is a lot of information I have placed here to hopefully answer most of your questions about tax administration and enforcement, and what I can offer you in the way of help and guidance to get through a tax controversy with the least amount of financial consequence and emotional stress!  This is your one-stop for IRS tax help and FTB tax help!!

As a United States Treasury licensed Enrolled Agent (EA) and Federally Authorized Tax Practitioner (FATP), it is my objective to provide you with valuable information about my background, my unique qualifications and the types of tax resolution, assistance and other tax related services that I offer.  

I have included in this large website some important self-help links as well as technical discussions on a variety of topics.  Regardless of your tax controversy, you can have confidence that I have the experience and knowledge to get it resolved.  I have a network of specialists who can assist in bankruptcy (if that is a viable option) or litigation in Tax Court or District Court if that is necessary.  But most importantly - generally the sooner you get help, the less complex and costly will be the resolution of your controversy. 

(This section for my clients contains copies of newsletters, highlights of tax law changes, and other items)



Dick Norton, E.A.



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 Richard E. Norton, E.A., Tax Return Preparation, Burbank, CA


Helpful Tax and Other Calculators




The 2023 filing deadline is over.  If you filed an extension, remember that the extension was solely for the physical filing of your return.  Any balance of tax due per your return was due to tbe paid by April 15th.  If you did not make a payment of the expected tax due, then I recommend you do it as soon as possible to limit the accrual of interest and failure to pay penalty.  Currently, that total averages about 14% a year - not a bargain!  If you did not get an extension, and you have not filed your return, please do it as soon as possible.  You will be assessed a late filing penalty of 5% a month (or fraction thereof - for a maximum of 25%) until it is filed.   Even if you cannot pay what you owe, at least file the return to stop further accrual of the late filing penalty!


Owe a lot of back taxes and want to take an international trip? 

You really need to address and resolve your tax liability NOW if you are contemplating any sort of a trip outside of the United States.  Why? Because the IRS has been notifying the State Department to either deny the issuance of a new or renewal of an existing password, or revoke an existing passport if a taxpayer owes $2,000 or more in tax, penalty and interest (as of 2024) AND meets other criteria.  Read more about this relatively new tool Congress gave the IRS to deal with delinquent taxpayers here!  Don't book a trip abroad and then get a nasty surprise that you are unable to leave the U.S. because of a revoked passport!!


If you have an outstanding liability that you wish to settle with the IRS by an installment agreement or an offer-in-compromise (OIC), the IRS requires taxpayers to be current with filing their returns, and in addition, be current with making estimated tax payments for the current year (2024), or have sufficient withholding to cover the accrued tax liability on the earnings to date.

We can assist in getting any delinquent 2023 (and prior year) returns filed quickly to keep the accrual of penalties and interest to a minimum.  During 2020, the IRS sent most field and office employees home to work, and limited the number of audits and enforcement actions.  2023 saw an increase in IRS (and other agencies) activities - including audits and collection efforts.  Most IRS employees were working remotely since the pandemic hit, but most returned to the office by the end of June 2022.  Both collection and audit activities have increased since then, and will continue to increase. The IRS is hiring a significant number of Revenue Agents, Special Agents, Revenue Officers, and Tax Compliance Officers.   It is more important than ever to be proactive and get help if you are notified of a pending audit or receive a notice of a balance due that you cannot pay in full.

Be alert to fraudulent contacts by scammers pretending to be IRS employees!!!  Thousands of taxpayers suffer financial loss and identity theft monthly when they provide personal and financial information or make payments to these fraudsters!!  Most of these crooks use scare tactics (like - there is a warrant for your arrest, or they are going to levy (attach) your accounts or salary) if you do not pay immediately! They often demand payment by a weird method - such as by gift cards or a Western Union transfer.  Almost always, the IRS's first taxpayer contact will be a letter or notice of a pending audit or non-payment of a liability.  If you have never received such a letter or notice, then be very careful about an unexpected call allegedly from the IRS!

Bottom line - if you are surprised by a call from someone alleging to be from the IRS, get their name, employee number, title of their position, their office address, and their contact phone number - then tell them you will call them back after you have verified their information.  You can then call the IRS at (800) 829-1040 and the employee can confirm whether or not you should have received the call and verify the employee information.  If you cannot get through to the IRS, then you can call me with the information and I will check it out through my sources.


Be alert to fraudulent contacts by scammers pretending to be IRS employees!!!  Thousands of taxpayers suffer financial loss and identity theft monthly when they provide personal and financial information or make payments to these fraudsters!!  Most of these crooks use scare tactics (like - there is a warrant for your arrest, or they are going to levy (attach) your accounts or salary) if you do not pay immediately! They often demand payment by a weird method - such as by gift cards or a Western Union transfer.  Almost always, the IRS's first taxpayer contact will be a letter or notice of a pending audit or non-payment of a liability.  If you have never received such a letter or notice, then be very careful about an unexpected call allegedly from the IRS!

Bottom line - if you are surprised by a call from someone alleging to be from the IRS, get their name, employee number, title of their position, their office address, and their contact phone number - then tell them you will call them back after you have verified their information.  You can then call the IRS at (800) 829-1040 and the employee can confirm whether or not you should have received the call and verify the employee information.  If you cannot get through to the IRS, then you can call me with the information and I will check it out through my sources.

For my tax return preparation clients, please click the box below to access the 2023 tax organizers.  You will need the password to access this page.  If you do not have it, please call or e-mail me and I will provide the password. Note - the Obamacare health insurance mandate penalties no longer apply for 2019 and later Federal returns. However, beginning in 2020, the State of California requires most all of its residents have qualified healthcare (similar to the former Obamacare mandate), or penalties could be asserted on the 2020 and later state returns.



There are numerous advertisements on radio and television as well as in various publicatons whereby companies allege they can get tax liabilities reduced or eliminated by means of an Offer-in-Compromise (or, OIC for short). Many of these advertisements are grossly misleading and are designed to separate you from your money.  The OIC program as it relates to payment of tax liabilities is tailored for taxpayers who are in dire financial straits and unable to fully pay what they owe through the sale of assets and monthly payments over the 10-year statute of limitations for collection of a balance due.  Obtaining IRS approval for acceptance of an OIC is a challenging process requiring not only well-prepared financial forms and supporting documents, but a persuasive cover letter that can assist in getting an agreement to a lower tax amount to settle the account for an amount less than what is owed.  There are OIC "mills" that solicit clients and separate them from their money without a glimmer of a chance for their clients to qualify for an OIC.  Any firm that promises to resolve your case for "pennies on the dollar" without having reviewed a full detailed and thorough analysis of your financial situation should be avoided like the plaque!   The IRS issued an advisory notice in December 2021 that said the following:


"We encourage eligible taxpayers in real financial distress to consider looking into an Offer in Compromise to resolve their tax issues," said IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig. "People also need to use caution with the program. Some companies routinely overstate how they can help with this program and clear up people's back taxes for pennies on the dollar. A quick visit to IRS.gov can provide important information to help people with this program."

An Offer in Compromise allows you to settle your tax debt for less than the full amount you owe if you qualify. It may be a legitimate option if you can't pay your full tax liability or doing so creates a financial hardship. The IRS considers your unique set of facts and circumstances when making that determination. The OIC program serves an important purpose for a select group of taxpayers.

The IRS periodically warns against hiring and paying needless fees to these "Offer in Compromise mills" that contort the IRS program into something it's not and mislead people who have no chance of meeting the requirements while charging excessive fees, often thousands of dollars. OIC mills were listed in the last two annual IRS Dirty Dozen lists of tax scams to avoid.

"I encourage taxpayers who may qualify for an Offer in Compromise to watch these videos and review information on IRS.gov to help them determine if the program is right for them," Rettig said. "Don't go to costly promoters advertising on television or radio who can make overstated claims or suggestions that the IRS will accept an OIC without even reviewing your situation first."

Bottom line - please be careful and do not get taken in by one of these OIC mills.  If you want to know if an OIC is an option for you, for a couple of hours of my consultation time, I will do a thorough analysis of your financial situation to make that determination.  As the Associate Chief in Los Angeles IRS Appeals before retirement from the IRS, I was the approving official for OICs for taxpayers in my area of jurisdiction. I can tell you if I would have approved an OIC for your financial situation if I were still in that IRS position.  If an OIC is a viable option, and if you retain me to represent you in pursuing an OIC (with the IRS or FTB), I will apply an hour of your consultation fee toward your retainer.  I discuss the OIC program in more depth in the "Technical Issues" section of this website.



NOTE - You will need the access code to download one of the organizers - contact me if you forgot it!  

There are only left until the 2024 return filing deadline!

At the outset, I want to alert everyone reading this website that there are thousands of fraudsters trying to separate taxpayers from their identity or their financial resources.  Please - do NOT give any personal information when receiving unsolicited calls from individuals claiming to be from the IRS or other government entities.  If you are unsure of their alleged official status, feel free to get  their contact information, then contact the IRS at (800-829-1040), or contact me and I will validate the information you were provided.  If you get a call from someone alleging to be from a financial institution and they ask you for identifying personal or financial information, I suggest you get their information, and then look up the customer service contact number on the Web - or even better - on the back of your credit card or bank statement.  Call that number and explain that you just received a call from someone alleging to be from their company.  You MUST be very cautious during these challenging times - too many taxpayers are falling victim to these crooks!! 

Be aware of e-mails and text messages that are allegedly from a financial institution or company advising you of some financial or other disturbing personal situation - with a link that looks official.  The fraudsters have been able to mimic official looking websites and links.  If you click on the link then begin providing personal information (like login information, Social Security Numbers, bank accounts, driver's license numbers, dates of birth, etc), then you likely are setting yourself up for an identity theft or a financial theft.  Bottom line - be very careful!!!  

OK - I know that there is a lot to read in this website!  But facing an IRS or state tax agency audit or collection action is serious business, and the more information you have, the greater opportunity you will have in successfully resolving a controversy.  The vast majority of taxpayers who are caught up in an IRS or state tax agency process can find themselves faced with a significant financial hit (having to pay additional tax, penalties and interest).  However, if the errors or omissions were intentional (you need to understand that it is a very challenging task for the IRS Special Agent to develop such a case to the point where the U.S. Attorney would go before the Grand Jury for an indictment), in the worst case scenario, the taxpayer could end up being confined to one of the Government's lodging facilities for many years!  Therefore, I suggest that you owe it to yourself to be as informed as possible as you wrestle with the decision of how best to deal with an actual or potential tax controversy.   Tax Resolution Specialists - especially those with prior inside-the-IRS-job experience (in my opinion) - can be an invaluable resource in getting a client through the maze of tax compliance.  Get IRS tax help as soon as possible if you are facing an IRS controversy!

Communicating with the IRS or State Tax Agency Employees

Taxpayers need to exercise care in deciding whether or not to personally talk with IRS or state tax agency employees.  In the worst case scenario, making the wrong statement could turn what should have been a civil resolution into potentially a criminal tax matter.  IRS Agents are well trained to look for "badges of fraud" in their audits.  Always be truthful in your statements to IRS or state employees.  An intentional false statement or providing fabricated documents can land you in very hot water! 

As a general rule, I advise clients to not volunteer information.  If asked a question by an IRS Revenue Agent, Revenue Officer, TCO or the equivalent state tax agency employee, answer it directly, clearly, but without unnecessary discussion.  If you are approached by an IRS Special Agent (they carry a badge and a gun), my strong recommendation is to say nothing and immediately get legal representation as they are charged with conducting criminal investigations.  A wrong statement to a Special Agent can lead to an indictment!   A sharp tax attorney can best guide a taxpayer who is being pursued for a possible criminal indictment.  If you are approached by a Special Agent and need a referral for a tax attorney, I have several I can recommend who were former IRS or US Department of Justice attorneys. 

Should you handle your own controversy or audit?

At the outset, anyone facing a tax controversy, tax audit or appeal can attempt to resolve their issues without professional help or guidance.  In my 34+ years of IRS experience, I can say without hesitation that in my opinion, the  majority of taxpayers - whether individuals, partnerships, corporations or other entity types - ended up with a better resolution or settlement when they were represented by professionals.  Again - get IRS tax help as soon as you know of a pending audit or collection matter.

The IRS and State tax controversy resolution settlement process can be complicated.  To be successful on their own, a taxpayer would have to devote a significant amount of time in studying the Internal Revenue Code, Regulations, case law, Rulings, Procedures. the Internal Revenue Manual (IRM - the "Bible" IRS employees must follow) and tax strategies for negotiating a favorable tax controversy resolution.  Without this effort, I firmly believe that it is far more likely that a taxpayer will end up with a less favorable "deal" for himself or herself.  Bottom line - the additional tax, penalty and interest the taxpayer will end up having to pay may be significantly more costly in the long run than the actual cost of representation by a tax resolution specialist (typically an enrolled agent or CPA) who could have obtained a more favorable resolution.  Not all accountants, attorneys or enrolled agents offer tax resolution services.  It is a specialized field of practice and you really should seek the help of a tax resolution specialist if you are in a controversy - or potential controversy - with the IRS or a state tax agency.

When Do You Need Professional Help?

While I generally do not recommend any taxpayer take on the IRS or a State tax agency on their own, I am very sensitive to clients with financial challenges and may be able to suggest ways for them to get IRS tax help and guidance while keeping their out-of-pocket costs for tax help down.  For example, I have had a number of clients who were successful in getting their IRS and other state controversies resolved by having me "hold their hand" through the process by using my help and guidance in a consultation capacity.  So, if you feel capable of and comfortable with working over the telephone, fax or mail (or, in rare circumstances -  face-to-face) with an IRS Revenue Officer, IRS Revenue Agent, IRS Tax Compliance Officer (TCO), IRS Appeals Officer or IRS Settlement Officer,  or any other employee involved in your IRS or California tax audit or collection controversy, then retaining me to hold your hand (which means that I will be providing you with an explanation of your options, strategic guidance, review of documents, and specific suggestions) could make the difference between the success or failure of your tax resolution efforts!   

Should I use my return preparer to represent me in an audit or collection matter?

As a general rule, I do not recommend taxpayers use the services of  their current accountant or tax preparer to represent them in an IRS or state tax audit or tax liability negotiations - unless the preparer possess special skills and extensive experience in tax controversy resolution.  Here is why! 

Who are Enrolled Agents?

Enrolled Agents are the only taxpayer representatives who receive their right to practice directly from the United States Government.  Only Enrolled Agents must prove their competence in matters of Federal taxation and report their hours of continuing professional education (CPE) directly to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).  It is the individual states that license certified public accountants (CPA) and attorneys and, therefore, their licenses are state specific. Unlike attorneys and certified public accountants, who may or may not choose to focus on taxes, most all Enrolled Agents focus their practice on tax return preparation, and a smaller number on providing tax resolution services.  A smaller percentage of Enrolled Agents also get involved providing tax resolution services in the area of tax controversy resolution - assisting their clients with audit and collection representation.  Enrolled Agents (EAs) are tax professionals  who are licensed by the U.S. Treasury and have demonstrated their competence by meeting that Department's tough standards.

If you need my services in obtaining a resolution of an IRS tax audit or State tax audit, IRS collection controversy concerning secured tax debts, and IRS audit appeal, IRS collection appeal or other tax-related problem with any income or employment tax agency, help is just an E-mail or phone call away!  

Time if of the essence in dealing with tax issues

From my 34+ years of inside-the-IRS experience, I can assure you that the earlier you seek and receive help for resolving your IRS, California or other state tax audit, tax collection or other tax controversy matter, the faster you can resume a normal life.  An excellent analogy concerning a tax controversy is that an IRS tax audit and collection problem, along with those of the State of California tax agencies (FTB and EDD), and other State tax agencies, is much like tooth decay.  It will just get worse if ignored.  For example, a cavity that could have been fixed with a simple filling may end up requiring a root canal and a crown - or worse yet, an implant!  Please be aware that when the IRS decides to do a "root canal" on your personal or company financial income or assets, they do not administer any anesthetic!  It hurts!   Further, recovery can take a very long time.  Many taxpayers do not know that certain tax debts are ineligible for bankruptcy discharge (such as personal liability for their company's failure to pay employment taxes - referred to as a "trust fund recovery penalty" - or, TFRP for short).  That means that the taxpayer is burdened with the liability for a long time (typically 10 years, or much longer if the IRS opts to pursue a civil judgment against the taxpayer).

That is why if you are facing a tax controversy, I recommend that you make a decision TODAY to seek the tax resolution services of a tax resolution specialist licensed by a government agency as meeting tough standards for representation before your IRS, CA or State income tax or employment tax issues become so serious that they will require more effort (and cost) to resolve, or they result in significant financial consequences such as wage and bank levies, liens, or even seizure of your real or personal property.  

An important note about tax liabilities

Tax liabilities are almost always secured debts.  A federal lien arises after demand and non-payment of tax, including interest, additions to tax, and assessable penalties ( 6321 Internal Revenue Code). The lien is affixed at the time the assessment is made and continues until it is satisfied or becomes unenforceable ( 6322). The lien is not perfected against certain creditors until public notice is given ( 6323), but timing of the secured interest still arises at assessment.

Issues surrounding the priority of liens and competing claims can be complicated, and advice and/or assistance from an attorney may be needed.   

The services I provide concerning the resolution of liabilities relate solely to secured tax debts, and all references on this website related to resolution of Federal or State liabilities relate to secured tax liabilities.   If you have unsecured debts, such as credit cards or personal loans, help is available from numerous attorneys or specialized debt-resolution companies to address those types of liabilities. 


With over 30 years of IRS employment experience, I have extensive knowledge and understanding of IRS processes and procedures.  This background will help me negotiate a resolution to your IRS or State tax controversy or get you through an IRS tax audit in the shortest amount of time with the least amount of financial impact.   Effectively resolving a tax controversy, including the filing of and negotiating an IRS tax audit or IRS collection appeal on secured tax liabilities, can be - and often is - a very complex process where specialized knowledge and experience is critical to success.

Do your homework before selecting a firm to represent you!

I strongly recommend that you check out any individual or firm BEFORE you commit to having them represent you.  Remember that it is YOUR LIFE - YOUR LIABILITY!   You can delegate the AUTHORITY to have someone represent you.  But, all tax agencies will deem YOU as solely responsible for your tax liability.   Accordingly, you owe it to yourself to do some checking before retaining the services of a tax resolution specialist.  

I have put some testimonials from my former clients on the website for your review.

Selecting the Right Person for your Situation

I STRONGLY suggest you be leery of any firm that advertises or claims that they are #1 in the industry or have the greatest level of success.  The IRS frowns on companies or individuals making such wild claims, and has taken action in the past where firms have made such statements - even to the point of obtaining injunctions against their practicing before the IRS.

Unfortunately, many firms make such unfounded claims as part of a scheme to attract and sign up clients.  They often retain far more clients than they can effectively handle.  These mass-market firms also tend to have a high turnover of employees, resulting in your case being shuffled from one employee to another - perhaps multiple times.  Many clients of these firms end up forfeiting their retainers after they have become fed up with lack of an effective tax controversy resolution service or audit representation, and just leave the firm to seek help elsewhere.  Further, the lack of effective and timely responsiveness by these large firms creates frustration with the IRS Revenue Agent, Revenue Officer, Tax Compliance Officer, Appeals Officer or Settlement Officer, or a State tax agent or officer, and that most often leads to further complications in the case.  

I recommend that you check out the Better Business Bureau before making a final decision on retaining a tax resolution specialist.   Here is the link to my accredited BBB A+ report:


Another company rating service is provided by Business Consumer Alliance.  Here is their assessment of my firm:



I recommend checking out any company you are considering through these two consumer services.


What About an Offer In Compromise (Settling your debt for less than the face amount)?

Since I mentioned OICs, there are strict guidelines that must be met to even qualify for an offer in compromise (OIC).  In my experience as an Associate Chief in Appeals (accepting or rejecting these OICs on behalf of the Commissioner) and in client representation post-retirement, a very small percentage of the accepted offers are resolved for a "few pennies on the dollar;" however, all accepted offers do result in some relief of the amount owed. 

Substantial concessions of tax, penalties and interest by the IRS and state agencies generally require extenuating circumstances - such as serious medical issues, advanced age, or actual or projected long-term unemployment by unskilled individuals.  I was the approving official at the IRS for offer in compromise (OIC) cases in my jurisdiction for almost two decades, so I have a solid understanding of what is required to potentially get an offer accepted. 

Some Other Matters of Importance

If you have just received a Notice from the IRS, FTB or any other State tax agency, please - do NOT ignore it!  Some of these notices have very specific time frames within which you can appeal a proposed action.  For instance, Letter 1058 issued by the IRS warns a taxpayer that if they do not pay the amount due, or file an appeal, within thirty (30) days of the notice date, the IRS WILL enforce collection (that means levying (seizing) bank accounts, wages, etc.).  Unfortunately, a number of my clients waited to contact me AFTER the 30 day period had expired and the IRS had levied their bank account or taken their pay check!   By waiting too long, these clients lost a very valuable appeal opportunity!   Usually, I can get the levy released, but the levy could have been avoided in the first place!  Please - don't procrastinate and forfeit your right to Appeal a proposed IRS enforcement!  Allow me to negotiate an acceptable repayment plan or offer in compromise on your behalf.  Help is just a phone call or E-mail away!


Have you recently changed your legal name (typically as a result of a marriage or divorce)?  Remember to contact the Social Security Administration BEFORE you file your next tax return to have your name corrected.  The IRS does a match of the Social Security Number and Name (first and last) as reflected on your tax return with the Social Security database.  If there is no match, the processing of the tax return may be delayed.  To make the change, complete and file Form SS-5 that is available on the Social Security website (www.ssa.gov). 

Be Aware of IRS Related Scams!

There are a lot of E-mails circulating that appear to be from the IRS.  I have personally received a number of these scam E-mails.  They tell you about alleged unclaimed refunds, stimulus payments or other items that require you to submit your personal information - such as Social Security Number, credit card information, etc. - to get the money or other benefit.  According to the IRS, the origin of these E-mails is usually a foreign country.

The IRS NEVER sends out unsolicited E-mails to taxpayers.  Period.  All IRS communications are by mail, or by FAX (and - fax communication will occur after you have established contact with the IRS and provided them with your fax number and authorization to use it).   

Please be very cautious when you receive any unsolicited E-mail asking for your personal or financial information from the IRS - or for that matter, from any source!  Most of these fraudulent E-mails "steal" the logos and website designs of legitimate companies - such as PayPal, banks, savings and loans, and other institutions - including the IRS!    They appear legitimate, but they are NOT

TELEPHONE CALL SCAMS!!!!  Wow - this has become a MAJOR issue.  Personally. I have received many calls from crooks who represent themselves as officers of the IRS or Treasury Department and make threats of arrest or other enforcement actions unless immediate payment is made.  Of course, I can quickly identify these people - and actually have some fun scaring the daylights out of them!  But far too often - they get a senior citizen on the phone who lacks the awareness that these scammers are impersonating an IRS employee.  I read far too often of our seniors losing thousands of dollars!   So please - spread the word among your family and friends!  The IRS NEVER - repeat - NEVER calls and threatens over the phone that they are going to arrest someone.  If you get such a call and you are concerned whether it is legitimate or not, get their name, position, office location and contact number and feel free to contact me.  I can very quickly determine if it is a scam.   You can also put the call-back number into GOOGLE - often, others have received calls from that number and will share their experience.  Most of these callers (from my experience) are using a product like Magic Jack.  It allows them to pre-program the CALLER ID to display a 202 area code (Washington DC), as well as a name similar to US GOVT.   In recent time, they are getting more clever and are using area codes in the general vicinity of their intended victim.

Be careful, folks.  I do not want any of you falling victim to a scammer!!!  One of my clients told me of their younger sister getting caught up in one of these scams.  She ended up giving the crook just over $10,000 - the amount she had saved for her college tuition!  It was a heartbreaking story!


My Prior IRS Experience

I retired in September 2000 as the Associate Chief of the Los Angeles, California IRS Appeals Office following many years of having held managerial and technical positions in the IRS Appeals, IRS Examination and IRS Collection functions.  I have extensive inside-the-IRS experience in  three operations/divisions (Collection, Examination and Appeals) that a limited number of  other practitioners possess.   As evidence of my success and recognition while working for the IRS, I was awarded the National Appeals Manager of the Year Award in 1997.


This extensive knowledge of IRS policies, procedures and practices has proven invaluable in helping me to resolve my clients' tax issues.     I often provide guidance or services to other tax professionals who are facing challenging technical or procedural issues.

The primary focus of my practice is representing clients in their IRS tax audit or IRS collection dispute, as well as in their IRS administrative appeal of a tax collection or tax audit controversy, or with their other tax problems or issues.  While the IRS is my primary focus, I do represent clients in State income and employment tax controversies as well. 

As mentioned before, I offer consultation services to guide clients who opt to represent themselves in the resolution or settlement of their IRS or state income tax or employment tax controversy problem.  This service is primarily targeted to help those taxpayers who are unable to afford full representation, but need IRS tax audit, collection or appeal help or other guidance in negotiating the resolution of their tax controversy.  If my clients - while trying to represent themselves with my consultation assistance - suddenly find that they are in over their head, I can quickly step in and represent them in the resolution of their tax controversy.

Why select me for the resolution of your tax controversy?

There are a number of reasons why I believe you want me on your team to get you whatever help you need.  You can read about those here.

Tax Practice Areas

The four broad categories of services that I offer are: 

  • Tax Return Preparation

  • Tax Controversy Resolution (providing irs tax audit help or resolution of an IRS tax audit or collection matter)

  • Consultation

  • Expert Witness

There is a lot to share about each of these service categories.  You can read more about each service I offer by clicking here.

Technical Topics

Do you want to know more about the new rules for employee unreimbursed business expenses?  Are you interested in finding out if you would qualify for an Offer in Compromise?  Do you believe that you may be an "innocent spouse" and therefore, not liable for a portion of a joint deficiency with your ex-spouse?  What are the rules for paying the "nanny tax?" Do you have some other tax question for which you need further information?  

There is a large section of this web site devoted to addressing these and many other recurring tax issues of interest to most individual taxpayers.   In addition to the above items, topics addressed include Collection Due Process procedures, installment agreements, contributions of property (you most likely have heard all of the radio ads advertising large deductions for donating your car that needs repair and cannot be sold ... be careful on this one!!.) - and the list goes on. 

If you are interested in reviewing the index of topics, click here or click the Technical Topics button on the index bar.  There is also a link to the index of technical topics on the Representation web page.   


Client Reviews

Assuming you are not a referral from one of my current or former clients, it can be reassuring to hear from former clients.  Below are several client reviews that are on Yelp and Linkedin that I will share with you.  I encourage you to check out the BBB and other sites which should help you have confidence in my ability to address and resolve your tax related issues.



Do you believe you do not have to file returns or pay taxes? 
Please read this!

I want to ensure that all who visit this website understand that the tax laws apply to everyone in this country, as well as to individuals outside of the United States who earn money from investments, property or businesses located in the U.S. (unless specifically exempted by a tax treaty, or specific provisions of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code).   

Filing returns and paying the taxes when due is required by law.  The willful failure to file a return and/or pay your income  or business tax can result in not only civil penalties, but criminal prosecution and penalties as well - and that can include prison time!  This is serious stuff! 

If you have not filed all of your required returns, I recommend you engage the services of a tax resolution specialist certified by a government agency as an EA, CPA or Attorney to get them prepared and filed ASAP - and hopefully you will do this BEFORE the IRS comes after you.  In my several decades of IRS experience, I never heard or read about a prosecution of a taxpayer who came forward and voluntarily filed delinquent returns (before IRS contact) in their effort to get compliant with the tax laws.  

Please understand that if you have not filed one or more tax returns, depending upon the circumstances for non-filing, the US Attorney may be able to convince a jury that your failure to file was not due to negligence or oversight, but solely for the purpose of willfully evading the tax laws.  This is why it is so important that even if you are unable to pay the tax liabilities and penalties for your delinquent returns, file the returns!!!  I can almost always work out a deal for you to satisfy the liabilities by an installment agreement, an Offer in Compromise or another form of resolution. 

This is important!  If you are contacted by a Special Agent of the Internal Revenue Service (or otherwise notified of a pending criminal investigation), I strongly recommend you retain the services of a qualified tax attorney - immediately!   I will be happy to recommend one if you need such a referral. 

God bless you, and thank you for visiting dick norton . com

Dick Norton, EA, FATP
Tax Resolution Specialist

Dick Norton, E.A.




Dick Norton, E.A.




Nothing on this website is intended to be specific tax advice for you, the reader, and cannot be relied upon for the purpose of avoiding any penalty that may be imposed by the IRS or any tax agency.  The material on this and all other pages of this website is provided for informational and educational purposes only I do not guarantee or warrantee in any manner the suitability, usefulness, accuracy, timeliness, or results of any portions of this site, nor the links contained in this site which link to other areas.   At times, information is taken from other sources and is believed to be accurate, but no verification or confirmation is performed.  Tax law is a very complex subject.  Any tax opinion upon which you may rely requires the careful and thorough analysis by a tax professional of the specific facts of your situation and the applicable legal statutes.  If you need specific advice, then you should request formal tax consultation as its purpose is to provide you with guidance for your specific tax issue or question upon which you can rely.

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