Why Aren’t You Giving Your Clients Hope?
The Roz Report
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The Secrets to Conquering Overwhelm
3 Steps to Take Instead of Pulling Your Hair Out
It’s that time of year again, folks: Welcome to tax season 2021! I bet that right about now, your desk is a disaster zone of paperwork. You probably feel like pulling your hair out when you think about the CARES Act, new changes to the tax codes, or all of the financial planning work you still have to do for 2021 and 2022. I don’t mean to add fuel to the fire, but on top of all that, this is also the best time of year to market the tax resolution side of your business to new clients. Everyone has taxes on their minds right now— including people who haven’t filed in a few years and/or owe the IRS money. Do you feel overwhelmed yet? If you do, you’re not alone. This is a tough time of year for everyone in the tax business. Luckily, I have a couple strategies up my sleeve that will help you conquer the feeling of overwhelm. 1. Take things one day at a time. This sounds way too easy, but it works. If you avoid thinking about what you have to do tomorrow or the day after and focus instead on the tasks in front of you for today, things will feel much more manageable. Your list of to-dos will be shorter and a weight will lift off your shoulders. It’s only when you start looking toward the future that anxiety and overwhelm set in. There are dozens of ways to do this, but when I was in the business, I used to use a yellow legal pad. Yeah, I know, old school. Every day before leaving the office, I sat down and penciled out my to-do list for the next day. That rundown of my cases and tasks sat on my desk overnight, and in the morning, it became my road map for my work that day. Planning everything out calmed me down and helped my mindset tremendously, and it can do the same for you. 2. Find your “who.” A common cause of overwhelm is trying to do everything yourself. No one is good at every single aspect of running a
business, and when you try to do something you don’t have the skill set for — like researching SEO strategies, writing blog posts, or managing your social media accounts — you’re guaranteed to trigger a downward spiral. Dan Sullivan, a good friend of mine and the founder of Strategic Coach, has a great philosophy for dealing with this problem. He calls it “Who Not How” and even published a book with the same name. The idea is that instead of trying to find a way to accomplish the tasks that aren’t in your wheelhouse, you should find someone else (a “who”) to do them for you. When you delegate to your “who,” you can rest easy knowing that the tasks are being “It seems counterintuitive, but the best time to invest in yourself or your business is when you feel like you can’t afford to.”
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THE OTHER PANDEMIC FOOD FOR THOUGHT
My baby girl is having a baby girl, and I’mover the moon and stars for the soon-to-be mommy and daddy, Erica and Ramsey.
been suicidal. Even before she knew her career path, she had helped friends in school who were suicidal. When she was an undergraduate in college, she created a video on suicide prevention. During her internship,
It’s Jewish tradition to name the child after a loved one passed on. It’s a way for a part of that person who’s passed on to live on. Ramsey isn’t Jewish, but he’s open to sharing the traditions. And even though I’ve mentioned to Erica to name her daughter after someone, I’mnot sure of their plans. Both of my daughters are named after my father, who was killed in a car accident at the age of 59 because of a car malfunction. They’re also named after a loved one on Michael’s side of the family. But Erica’s English middle name, Victoria, is the name of my best friend who died six months after giving birth to her daughter. Tragically, Victoria suffered frompostpartumpsychosis after birth and died by suicide. I’ve never discussed this with anyone who didn’t know her, or if I thought that information could be helpful to someone, until now. One reason is I never wanted anybody’s opinion or feedback on the situation. They didn’t know her, and I didn’t want to“explain”her or what happened. Victoria and I literally grew up together. We lived close to each other, and when we weren’t spending time together, we’d be talking on the phone. She was one of my bridesmaids when I married. She had so many qualities I admired, one being her ability to stand up for those teased in school or anywhere. Her conviction of caring for someone else was stronger than the recourse of becoming a target. The pain of losing her was like if I lost a sister. When her daughter was a couple months old, I sensed something was wrong but had no idea what it was, and I confrontedVictoria and begged her to tell me, but she wouldn’t. She said, “You’ll never forgive me.”And I said, “There isn’t anything you’d do I wouldn’t forgive you for.”This was back in 1990, and I didn’t even knowwhat postpartumdepression was. After she died, I did research to get a better understanding of postpartumdepression and to write an article to be published in a magazine to bring awareness to others. I enrolled in a writing class at UCLA, which led tomore classes. I did all this in hopes of gettingmy article published, which it never was, although I ended up having a career as a writer. Luckily, today more women and families knowwhat postpartumdepression is and there are better treatments for it.
Left: Roslyn and Victoria Right: Erica at 17 weeks pregnant
she worked at Lincoln Memorial Hospital in the Bronx treating suicidal people who came into the emergency room. And as a professional working at UCLA, she has trained emergency room doctors on how to treat suicidal people who come into the ER. It’s like I couldn’t helpmy best friend because I didn’t know the problem, or how to help her, but ironically, her namesake has helpedmany. Naming my children after loved ones has been important to me. Losing my father and best friend suddenly was devastating, but somehow passing on their name to my children has been healing to me. My point of all of this is while there’s a COVID-19 pandemic going on, Erica says it’s brought on another pandemic that’s not being talked about enough and that is the mental health pandemic. So, I’m talking about it here. Victoria wasn’t a depressed person by nature, and I know her husband tried to help her. At the time, her psychosis told her that her family would be better off without her. And that’s what depression does— it lies. Instead, nothing was the same without her. Her husband eventually remarried, and I became friends with his wife who adopted and raised her daughter, who is a wonderful young woman. Don’t let depression lie to you or someone you love. Your life is worth it. One call, one more day canmake all the difference. If tellingVictoria’s story helps anyone in any way, it was worth sharing.
If you, or someone you know, is feeling suicidal, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800.273.8255 or go to their website at SuicidePreventionLifeline.org. –Roslyn Rozbruch
What’s interesting is that my daughter Erica Victoria, who has a PhD in clinical psychology, has helped somany others who have
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PRACTICE CORNER FROM THE
IRS Installment Agreements — Which One Is Right for Your Client?
The IRS allows taxpayers to pay off tax debt through an Installment Agreement (IA) after they can prove paying off the debt all at once is not possible. An IA is an agreement between the taxpayer and the IRS that fully pays the liability over time, generally 72 months. The reality is that 65%–70% of your tax resolution cases will be resolved through IAs. There are four types of Installment Agreements: 1. Full Pay IA: Per the 433-A, the client can full pay the balance due before CSED expires. 2. Partial Pay IA: Per the 433-A, the client cannot fully pay the balance before CSED expires. [Sometimes these are better than an offer in compromise (OIC), as the IRS does not generally consider equity in assets.] 3. A: Streamline IA: Under $25,000 (assessed balance), term 60 months, no 433-A, no lien filed. B: Streamline IA: $25,000–$49,999 (assessed balance), term 72 months, no 433-A, no lien filed with Direct Debit/433-D. C: Streamline IA: $50,000–$250,000 (assessed balance), must be paid within remaining life of CSED, no 433-A, lien WILL BE filed. Only available via ACS. 4. Currently Non-Collectible (CNC): Per 433-A, the taxpayer shows they have $0 disposable income and no ability to pay. These are a temporary Band-Aid, as these regularly get reviewed if income increases. Use
as a stepping stone for an OIC or for elderly people on fixed incomes. The immense VALUE you provide to IA clients is the following: 1. As their vigorous advocate, you are preventing the IRS from managing your client’s cash flow. 2. You (automatically) reduce the future Failure to Pay penalties by 50% (going from .5% to .25% per month). 3. You are making sure the IRS correctly codes the account with an IA status code preventing future garnishments and levies as long as your client remains compliant.
4. You are requesting, if applicable, First Time Penalty Abatement with ACS. Don’t overlook these different types of IAs, especially the Partial Pay IA. These are like a “back door OIC,” as they are much less intrusive and might be perfect for clients who have low disposable income but have assets that generally are not figured into the monthly payment amount. A lot of your clients can settle for less through a PPIA than an OIC.
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Antonio Nava, EA Platinum Mastermind Member Spotlight
Antonio Nava, EA, president/CEO of Pacific Tax Solutions in Orange County, California, believes in hard work and learning all he can—and he does both. Antonio’s work ethic and philosophy of life served himwell when he moved fromMexico to the United States as a young husband and father. “I came to the U.S. at the age of 26, and here is what I learned: Everybody gets paid according to the value you bring to the marketplace,” Antonio says. “When we came to the U.S., the only work I found was to work as a dishwasher. Why? Because I didn’t know anything about the language, the culture, didn’t have friends, didn’t have relatives, didn’t have anything. So, what value could I provide?” But Antonio worked hard. “I started as a dishwasher, and four years later, I was the general manager,”he says. “Five years later, I moved to run another restaurant.” While managing a busy restaurant, Antonio attended college and earned a certificate in accounting. When the restaurant sold one month before he completed his course, Antonio had a decision tomake: Seek another management position at a restaurant or strike out on his own in the world of tax prep. He chose the latter. Today Antonio is involved in five family-run corporations, in varying degrees, that include insurance, tax preparation, financial services, a business school, and his tax resolution firm. About five years ago, Antonio decided to focus his practice on tax resolution and became an enrolled agent. Around that time, he also connected with Roz Strategies. “I knew I could represent clients with tax liabilities, but honestly, I
didn’t know this market existed the way it does,”Antonio recalls. While attending a tax resolution conference, Antonio and his daughter Karina attended Michael’s session. They liked what they heard and invested in Michael’s program. When Antonio’s daughter Laura earned her CPA, she took over the accounting and tax preparation side of the business, and Antonio began focusing on tax resolution. Antonio and Karina attended the Tax Resolution Success Summit in 2016, and they haven’t looked back. “When I met Michael, everything changed,” Antonio says. “He knows the technical stuff and he knows the real stuff, which is the marketing. I started to apply everything I learned from him—marketing fliers, radio, and following his advice.” preparers. “A large percentage of Spanish-speaking tax preparers are not licensed, and I decided to provide value to themby providing training,”he explains. “I started to promote my tax resolution business in a different way. For example, I taught a seminar on due diligence, and over 400 tax preparers signed up. After two hours of training, I promotedmy tax resolution business. Every time I do that, my telephone rings a lot with referrals.” Antonio discovered a niche in the Spanish-speaking community of tax When they call, Antonio doesn’t solicit clients from tax preparers. Instead, he offers his tax resolution services to the tax preparers. Antonio explains it like this to them: “I don’t want your clients. I just want to work with you. Introduce me to clients as the person on your teamwho has experience in tax resolution. You keep your clients.”
Antonio Nava with wife Silvia and daughters, Karina & Laura
Even though he has people to work the cases, he still enjoys the challenge of sometimes resolving some himself. One stands out in particular. A commercial truck driver contacted Antonio because he had a $250,000 tax liability and the IRS had revoked his passport. Without a passport, he couldn’t renew his commercial driver’s license. Without a license, he couldn’t work and pay his tax debt. His numerous calls to the IRS and State Department of Revenue were unsuccessful, but Antonio was able to put him into a“currently non-collectible” status and save his passport frombeing revoked so he could renew his license and return to work. Antonio is grateful to have his entire family involved in his businesses: his wife, Silvia, and daughters, Karina and Laura. Prior to the pandemic, Antonio’s family enjoyed frequent international trips, especially to Italy, Spain, and his home country, Mexico. Even now, he says they plan to take off one week per month to enjoy time together. “Working every day together is not enough,” he says. “Of course, right now we have to stay home, but if we have the small opportunity to go out, we just go out!”
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Join us for a 360-degree, totally interactive experience at our Virtual SixthAnnual Tax Resolution Success Summit! SAVE THE DATE Thursday, Aug. 26 Friday, Aug. 27 Saturday, Aug. 28 Register now for early-bird pricing. Formore details, visit RozStrategies.com/summit. Not only will we work on your 12-monthmarketing plan, but we’ll also help you implement it! You’ll be able to put these actionable strategies in place the Monday after the event and hear from some of the best guest speakers in the country who’ll inspire andmotivate you! This event only takes place once a year! Don’tmiss out on the up-to- the-minute strategies that can take your practice to the next level! Formore information go to RozStrategies.com/summit, contact our concierge Ruthie at Ruthie@RozStrategies.com, or call our offices at 888.670.0303.
STRATEGIZE * IMPLEMENT * MULTIPLY
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S H O U T
Kudos to Zeb Elkinton for playing the long game and being strategic in settling his client’s $142,000 tax bill with an OIC for ONE DOLLAR ($1)! Now that’s what we call negotiating! Congratulations to Sherry Borshoff for taking on the role as education chair for the Indiana Society of Enrolled Agents. Way to go, Jonathan Donenfeld , for resolving two amazing OIC cases. The first client had a $90,000 tax debt, and the case was settled for $400. That is a 99% savings for the client! The second client had a tax debt of $144,000, and he settled the case for just ONE DOLLAR. That is a 99.9% savings for the client! AMAZING! Congratulations to Tracie Lowe on selling the entire case at the initial consultation and receiving a check for the full amount of $7,950. High-five to LuSundra Everett , Joaquin Torres, and Louise Hartford for securing new tax resolution clients.
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done by an expert. You’ll also free up time to focus on the area where you’re the superhero: either generating leads, talking to prospects, or doing case work. Your “who” doesn’t need to be a new full-time team member. They can be a part-time worker, an independent contractor, or anything in between. What matters is that they’re a lot better than you are for the task at hand. I hire “whos” all the time. Last year, when we threw our first virtual Tax Resolution Success Summit, we hired Bari from Sage Event Productions, a “who” to plan our event. Virtual conferences were uncharted territory for Roslyn and me, but Bari is an expert on live and virtual event planning. She did a better job than we ever could have and made the event stress-free on our end. 3. Get out of your comfort zone. You might already feel like you’re outside of your comfort zone, but the truth is that overwhelm is often an unwelcome but invited guest. Don’t be afraid to grow your tax resolution practice. You might be uncomfortable implementing new marketing ideas, but you have to start somewhere. It seems counterintuitive, but the best time to invest in yourself or your business is when you feel like you can’t afford to. Trust me — once you hire a new employee on the payroll, pay for a coach, or have an independent contractor locked in, you’ll find the motivation to push forward and generate more income. Start with baby steps. Creating a job listing or making a phone call will help get you out of your rut. This tax season, don’t let overwhelm hold your business back. Use these three strategies to remove that roadblock and reach your next level of growth.
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O U T S !
Large and decorated envelope with stamps, check! Certificate of Membership, check! APP letter, check! Terms of Service, check! Now that’s what we call a great roll out of an Audit Protection Plan, Jesus Abikarram !
Do you have a story or picture to share with us about something you’ve implemented, a client you’ve helped with a tax problem, or anything else you’d like to share? If you do, email it to Info@ RozStrategies.com and we will give a Shout Out to you!
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11271 Ventura Blvd. #612 Studio City, CA 91604 Inside This Issue pg 1 ∙
The Secrets to Conquering Overwhelm
Food for Thought
pg 2 ∙ pg 3 ∙ pg 4 ∙ pg 5 ∙
From the Practice Corner
Save the Date for Our Virtual 6th Annual Tax Resolution Success Summit
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Terror Tale of the Month
IRS Terror Tale of the Month The IRS Battles a Bank Over the Worth of Prince’s Estate
Photo credit: Yves Lorson
When international rock star Prince died of a fentanyl overdose in 2016, his family was dismayed to discover that he’d passed without a will. A massive estate battle ensued. The tug of war between Prince’s six siblings and half-siblings was in the news for years, and now, the controversial estate is back in the headlines thanks to an announcement from the IRS. In January 2021, the IRS revealed that according to its calculations, Comerica Bank & Trust had undervalued Prince’s estate by a whopping $80 million. Comerica, the estate administrator, claimed Prince’s assets were worth $82.3 million, but the IRS says that, counting Prince’s music publishing and recording interests, it’s actually worth double that — $163.2 million to be exact.
The IRS is invested in this probate fight because if its calculations are right, then the estate owes an additional $32.4 million in federal taxes. On top of that, the agency wants Prince’s heirs to pay an additional $6.4 million as an “accuracy-related penalty” for Comerica’s mistake. But Comerica won’t back down. The bank sued the IRS in U.S. Tax Court, claiming that its original estimate was accurate and, as the Associated Press (AP) puts it, “the agency’s calculations are riddled with errors.”As we write this, Comerica’s trial request is pending. “What we have here is a classic battle of the experts — the estate’s experts and the IRS’s experts,”estate planning attorney Dennis Patrick told AP.
It’s unclear who will triumph in this case, but regardless of the outcome, it’s certainly a terror tale for Prince’s heirs. To resolve the dispute, they’ll likely have to shell out additional funds for court filings and legal fees and may even be stuck spending another five years in court. If Prince were alive he might be singing the blues instead of rock ‘n’ roll.
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