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It’s been a long and stressful tax season. Mix long hours together with COVID, and there’s real worry about mental health for tax professionals, as well as taxpayers. More often than not, one of the barriers to seeking help is stigma: it is difficult for any professional to admit that they are suffering. So let’s talk about stigma. This week’s episode focuses on the steps you need to take to confront personal mental struggles in the context of a real success story from a fellow lawyer, Brian Cuban, who has experienced depression and addiction.

Turning Struggles into Success as a Professional 

Joining Kelly this week is Brian Cuban, a lawyer who has faced his share of struggles. Brian is a lawyer, the brother of Mark Cuban (Dallas Mavericks coach), and a famous author. Brian suffered from drug addiction, self-image problems, depression, and childhood trauma. Mental struggles can be a roller coaster for both people struggling, or people watching others struggle. Together, Kelly and Brian share insight on mental struggles.

We have all heard, that admitting is the first step to overcoming a problem. However, the battle does not stop there. Kelly states that “the idea of hopefulness can get lost in dark times.” Let Kelly and Brian shine some light on this matter by providing stories, resources, hope, and most of all, support, to fighting mental health stigmas while continuing the battle as a professional.

Listen to Kelly and Brian Cubantalk more about overcoming mental struggles such as: 

  • Brian’s History with Addiction as a Lawyer 
  • How Law Firm Culture Triggers Mental Struggles  
  • How Lawyers Obtain Support and Reinforcement on Bad Behavior   
  • Ego and Profession Can Get in the way of Recovery 
  • Finding Your way out of False Functioning Ideas  
  • Identifying a Problem with Consequences and Community  
  • The Hope for Generational Change  
  • How Shifting Culture Changes Triggers 
  • Developing and Adapting is a Must 
  • Coping with the Impact of Corona Virus – Thoughts Are not Facts 
  • Brian’s Steps to Recovery and Continuing his Profession  
  • Responsibility, Reconcile and Resilience  
  •  How to Handle Being the Watcher of the Problem Rather than the Problem 
  • Where & How Help can Truly be Found and Achieved  
  • Self-Assessing as a Step with Stigma & What Step is Next 

More About Kelly Phillips Erb: 

Kelly is the creator and host of the new Taxgirl podcast series. Kelly is a practicing tax attorney with considerable experience and knowledge. She works with taxpayers like you every day. One of the things that she does is help folks out of tax jams, and hopefully, keep others from getting into them.  

Links Mentioned: 

Kelly’s Website – Taxgirl  

Brian Cuban – LinkedIn 

Brian Cuban’s Self Image Book – Shattered Image 

Brian Cuban’s Lawyer Addiction Book – The Addicted Lawyer 

Peter Principal  

ABA 

John Hopkins – Covid19 Update Site  

Addiction and Depression Resources:  

Alcohol Anonymous  

Teletherapy  

Lawyers Assistance Program  

Smart Recovery 

Celebrate Recovery

For many years, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has grown to help serve our community and taxpayers. Today, the Criminal Investigation Agency, also known as CI, has been working hard to better our community by tackling tax fraud and other financial crimes. The hard work and efforts of this agency are sometimes overlooked or unknown. This week, Kelly invites Don Fort, the Chief of Criminal Investigation with the IRS to explore the crucial work and educate listeners on how the CI Agency provides a backbone for us, worldwide.

Learn it All Through the Chief of Criminal Investigation Himself 

As Don Fort states, “Most crimes are financially driven.” When you start to break down crime, the majority of the cases are related to financial matters. This supports the fact that the CI team always has their hands full, and never stumble upon a shortage of cases. Don has been with the IRS for 29 years now, holding roughly nine leadership positions. If anyone can explain the ins and outs of the IRS, it’s Don. In this episode, Don and Kelly touch base on the organization itself, the cases they face, and the future that lies ahead.  

Listen to Kelly and Dodiscuss more about the IRS and its organization, such as: 

  • The History on the Intelligence Unit and Criminal Investigation 
  • Don’s Career path with the IRS and what lead him to Chief  
  • Don’s successes and special stories that shaped his Career 
  • The truths about Special Agents and Jurisdictions  
  • All about the Academy itself 
  • IRS initiating Cases versus being sought out for them 
  • The Importance of Notable and Neighborhood Cases 
  • Don’s most memorable and highlighted achievements with the IRS 
  • The intensity and timeline of cases 
  • CI’s Danger behind the scenes 
  • How the Tax Code impacts the CI Agency 
  • How to become a part of the IRS or CI team 
  • Strong staff and worldwide successes with the Agency 
  • What is next for CI and Don, as he meets retirement   

More About Kelly Phillips Erb: 

Kelly is the creator and host of the new Taxgirl podcast series. Kelly is a practicing tax attorney with considerable experience and knowledge. She works with taxpayers like you every day. One of the things that she does is help folks out of tax jams, and hopefully, keep others from getting into them.  

Links Mentioned: 

Kelly’s Website – Taxgirl  

Don Fort – LinkedIn 

PPP Florida Arrest 

Al Capone IRS Case 

IRS Jobs 

Internal Revenue Services 

Criminal Investigation Agency 

Did you know that the government may be able to seize your property – even if you’re not accused of a crime? It’s true. Federal and state statutes allow authorities to take your property through a process called civil forfeiture.

Test your knowledge here:

To listen to the podcast episode, you can click over to find a link to your favorite platform, or just click here:

I’ve been listening to your feedback!

As previously announced, we’re making some changes to the podcast. We are keeping the interview portion front and center. That’s not changing. But, as promised, we’ve removed the intro – for timeliness and podcast length – and will be spinning it off as a separate bit.

Originally, the spinoff was going to be a quick news update, but a few folks suggested instead that I do an “Ask The Taxgirl” segment where I answer reader mail over the air.

So, I’m asking which you prefer. Your responses are appreciated!

We all know that under the Constitution, the government cannot deny anyone life, liberty, or property without due process of law. However, that hasn’t stopped federal and state authorities from seizing property even when a crime has not been committed. Many taxpayers don’t understand the laws and guidelines that apply to civil forfeiture. In this week’s podcast, Kelly and her guest Dan Alban, an attorney at the Institute for Justice, discuss the ins, outs, dos, and don’ts of civil forfeiture.  

Hope for Civil Forfeiture Reform 

Sadly, there have been many innocent victims who have experienced and are still experiencing civil forfeiture issues. Dan helps Kelly unfold many grey areas of civil forfeiture, as well as offer tips and resources on how taxpayers and others can forgo their litigations or prevent future incidents. They share real life cases and how civil forfeiture has progressed, as well as the hope for reform in the future. 

Listen to Kelly and Dan cover many topics on Civil Forfeiture, such as: 

  • The history of civil forfeiture 
  • How civil forfeiture has transitioned 
  • Structuring and the challenges with structuring 
  • The expenses and process of civil forfeiture litigation
  • Pending cases and resolutions 
  • The largely unknown air traveling with money rules and laws 
  • Rules and tips for taxpayers  
  • IRS seizure laws 
  • Attorney assistance and legal proceedings 
  • Violations and due process 
  • Hopes for progression and reforms 

More About Kelly Phillips Erb: 

Kelly is the creator and host of the new Taxgirl podcast series. Kelly is a practicing tax attorney with considerable experience and knowledge. She works with taxpayers like you every day to help you get out and stay out of tax trouble. 

Links Mentioned: 

Kelly’s Website – Taxgirl  

Steve Forbes – What’s Ahead 

Structuring and Bank Information – FinCEN 

Clyde Hirsch Sowers Respect Act 

End Forfeiture 

form for potential clients: https://www.ij.org/report-abuse 

Dan Alban – LinkedIn 

Institute For Justice – IJ.org (donor info here)

I know many of you have heard the controversy about Wayfair and Amazon paying taxes. This week’s episode with Kelly really dives into the recent Supreme Court ruling that online businesses must pay taxes and the effect on smaller, primarily online businesses. Brad Scott joins Kelly as a guest to give an inside look at how the Kill Quill ruling affects small businesses. Brad is the Director of Finance at Halstead Bead, Inc., a jewelry component wholesaler supplying jewelers across the United States and around the globe. Halstead is a second-generation, family-owned, small business. Scott has been with Halstead since 2002. Since May 2019, Scott has led Halstead’s Wayfair legislative advocacy efforts to achieve uniformity, simplification, clarity, and liability limitations for small businesses at both the state and the federal level. Scott graduated from Michigan State University with a BA in Finance.

Small Businesses Complying with the Kill Quill Ruling  

As Brad and Kelly discuss the tax ruling for online retailers, they also discuss what it means for taxpayers and professionals. Many businesses, taxpayers, and online retailers may not even know if the rules apply to them, or how to comply. Brad and Kelly help listeners learn how to move towards compliance, and what can happen along the way. Along with these helpful tips, Brad and Kelly discuss if this will ruling stay in effect and how the burden and benefits can vary. The takeaway from this podcast is beneficial by hearing an insider’s experience and opinions on the matter, while also learning the expectations and what comes next.

Listen to Kelly and Brad Scott talk Tax Rulings, as well as: 

  • Discover About Complying with 2018 Ruling  
  • Which Rules Apply to You? 
  • Necessary Educational Expenses to Comply 
  • Deciding on Where to do Business  
  • The Challenge of Keeping up with Changes
  • Brad’s Hope to Uniform Taxes
  • Do Compliances Benefit Anyone, or Burden?
  • It is not All About the Cost
  • Finding Allies to Fight for Small Businesses
  • How COVID-19 Could Change the Ruling 
  • Complexity is Causing Compliance Difficulties  
  • Taking the Next Step, Moving Forward  

More About Kelly Phillips Erb: 

Kelly is the creator and host of the new Taxgirl podcast series. Kelly is a practicing tax attorney with considerable experience and knowledge. She works with taxpayers like you every day. One of the things that she does is help folks out of tax jams, and hopefully, keep others from getting into them.  

Links Mentioned: 

Kelly’s Website – Taxgirl  

Brad’s Family Business – Halstead Bead 

National Federation of Independent Business- NFIB 

American Catalog Mailers Association – ACMA 

Online Merchants Guild – OMG

Streamlined Sales Tax Governing Board, Inc. – SST

Join Kelly this week for a podcast focused on something we all dread: stress. Tax season and deadlines mean that stress is a concern for many taxpayers and professionals. There are so many changes in the tax world this year due to COVID-19 – with more to follow. We need to recognize if these factors are causing stress in our lives, and how to take control.

Stress Prevention  

Jeena Cho is Kelly’s guest this week. Jeena is the author of The Anxious Lawyer, an 8-week guide for lawyers on mindfulness and resiliency. She is also a partner at the JC Law Group, a contributor to the ABA Journal, and on top of that… she (like Kelly) is a mom. Jeena talks listeners through ways to channel stress and utilize self-care during this tense tax time – and even gets Kelly to meditate.

Listen to Kelly and Jeena Cho talk self-care, as well as: 

  • 2019 Tax Deadline, Dates, Extension, Payment & Estimated Tax information 
  • The Difficulty of the Delayed Tax Season 
  • How Anxiety is Arising and Affecting the Tax World 
  • How to Handle and Channel Anxiety  
  • The Unknown Driving Fear 
  • How to Separate Ourselves from Stress  
  • Self-Care with Consistency  
  • Meditation Tips and Benefits  
  • Training the Mind for Meditating  
  • Recognition and Routines of Self-Care 
  • Justifying and Juggling Self-Care 

More About Kelly Phillips Erb: 

Kelly is the creator and host of the new Taxgirl podcast series. Kelly is a practicing tax attorney with considerable experience and knowledge. She works with taxpayers like you every day. One of the things that she does is help folks out of tax jams, and hopefully, keep others from getting into them.  

Links Mentioned: 

Kelly’s Website – Taxgirl  

Jeena’s Website – Jeena Cho 

Jeena’s 8 Week Law Guide to a Joyful and Satisfying Law Practice Through Mindfulness and Meditation – The Anxious Lawyer 

JC Law Group PC – Facebook 

ABA Journal 

Jeena’s Teachings – Programs and Workshops 

Apps Mentioned: 

Inside timer 

Calm  

Join us in kicking off our new and informative podcast hosted by Kelly Phillips Erb. During this episode, Kelly invites a guest host, Jeff Grant to discuss his experience with applying for a small business loan – and what followed.  

Taking On Business Loans 

Jeff Grant is someone who has followed through with a business loan in a time of desperation. He is able to share with Kelly some real-life experiences when applying for a loan and how you can be tempted to go too far. Kelly also discusses the alignment with today’s current economic crisis.  

Listen to Kelly and Jeff talk loans, as well as: 

  • The impact of Small Business Administration (SBA) loans  
  • How SBA Loans should support businesses and not lifestyles 
  • How to properly handle loan money and the loan process 
  • Why you shouldn’t lie – even if it feels small – to qualify for loans 
  • How taking on debt should be handled and used as a business strategy 
  • The Justice Department’s crackdown on loans 
  • The importance of understanding challenges to create znspiration 
  • Challenges and misunderstandings that you should be aware of during this time 

More About Kelly Phillips Erb: 

Kelly is the creator and host of the new Taxgirl podcast series. Kelly is a practicing tax attorney with considerable experience and knowledge. She works with taxpayers like you every day. One of the things that she does is help folks out of tax jams, and hopefully, keep others from getting into them.  

Links Mentioned: 

Kelly’s Website – Taxgirl  

Jeff’s Website – Prisonist