Discussion:Any suggestions for the US tax court exam?

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Discussion Forum Index --> Business Growth Community --> Any suggestions for the US tax court exam?

LadyLiberty (talk|edits) said:

12 November 2013

LadyLiberty (talk|edits) said:

12 November 2013
I am new to this board, and found it while googling for the US tax court exam being given this Nov 2014.

I am trying to study on my own because the cost of paying for the classes, is to high for a person who is also increasing ones practice

When searching what to do, I am amazed that the pass rate is five percent!

The cost for taking the exam in Washington is only seventy dollars

Any reading or suggestions would be valued?

Thanks in advance

DublinTax (talk|edits) said:

20 November 2013
If your goal is to pass Sherills Class is a must http://www.taxcourtexam.com/

Almost all the people who paseed in 2012 are from her class. Kevin Houston is one among them and active on this forum. I took the test in 2012 and failed in Ethincs part and is considered to be the easiest of all parts.

Evidence is considered to be the toughest and many fail in that. Tax section is vast coverage.

Doing this on your own without Sherills class is an uphill battle.

If you are still bent on doing on your own





looks for other parts of the above video

Professinal Resposibility



Tax court Rules




read all cases

But again your odds of passing increase if you take the Sherills class. I have taken it for my 2012 exam.

DublinTax (talk|edits) said:

20 November 2013
oh one more thing try to answer all the past year US tax court exam questions.

LadyLiberty (talk|edits) said:

21 November 2013
I appreciate your advice and links

NMexEA (talk|edits) said:

29 January 2014
Please consider, LadyLiberty...the Tax Court exam is a Bar exam in every sense of the word except that the substantive subject matter is taxes instead of torts, contracts, criminal law, and the like. It is an essay exam graded by lawyers.

Here is something you should know before trying to do this on your own...95% of law school graduates and experienced attorneys who attempt a state Bar exam take a formal Bar review course. Even so, the national first-time pass rate for these people hovers around 75%. Even though virtually all state Bar applicants have law degrees, such research as there is on the subject suggests that taking a Bar review course substantially improves their chances of passing.

Good luck on your exam whatever you decide to do!

BrockEA (talk|edits) said:

4 February 2014
Lady Liberty,

If I could write a letter to myself when I was in my 20's, it would tell me to get my CPA and then pursue the Tax Court exam. In my mind, the people willing to go to Tax Court probably have the means to pay well for good representation. That's opposed to the people who need general represenation work who often can't pay as well. I think it would be an extremely good avenue to approach.

I went back and looked at some of the previous tests and honestly they didn't seem that difficult. To me the taxation questions were the hardest because they represent real life situations that we, as Tax Preparers, have faced. The difference being you can't research the issue during the test like I would in real life.

If I were younger, this would be what I would be doing but at 42 with a full-time job that runs me 60 hours thanks to bummercare, two kids, a wife and a head full of grey hair....my time has past for the effort required. But I can't lie and say it doesn't interest me, I've always wanted to be an Attorney. Best of both worlds, Accounting/Taxation combined with the Courts.

NMexEA (talk|edits) said:

6 February 2014
I've been thinking of taking another Bar exam myself lately for Arizona. There are a couple of EXTREMELY cheap Bar review courses out there that, while not targeted to the Tax Court exam might be useful in preparing for the Evidence, Procedure, and Professional Responsibility sections of the Tax Court exam.

Take a look at www.baroutlines.com for one example. There are others. I haven't tried any of them yet but this is the one I'll use if I go for Arizona.

The thing a good Review course can do is teach you the knack of writing Bar exam essay answers. It's a rather specialized skill, useful in no other context. I don't know whether the ultra-cheap courses offer practice exam critiques but what you MUST do is practice writing essay answers.

Kevinh5 (talk|edits) said:

6 February 2014
Lady Liberty, there have been many discussions, accessable via the yellow search box, on this very topic.

Take Sherrill's class. I'll be helping her teach the tax topics this year.

NMexEA (talk|edits) said:

8 February 2014

I'm excited to hear that you are expanding your teaching scope! But just out of curiosity, have you started using your new Tax Court law license?

(Yes, it IS a law license, however limited.)

Gazoo (talk|edits) said:

8 February 2014
When you sit for the exam, chug two high energy drinks right before you walk into the test center (go along the line and pick the ones with the highest caffine content). ** True, if you have cardiovascular disease (even in occult status) you could die of a massive heart attack or suffer a dibilitating stroke....but it is worth the risk to ace the exam.

An even better solution would be to find a teen and cop some high strength Ritalin from him or her and take double the dose for your body weight before you attempt the exam. I say this only in in interests of free speech, and I'm sure no one will actually do this, or if they do it they will keep their kips buttoned up about it. Of course, there is also the same risk of a catastrophic vascular event, but again, it's well worth the risk in order to pass the exam.

Take a wooden dowel with you do bite down on after you dose yourself with the above drugs. Try to watch some of the old electro shock treatments they gave mental patients back in the 50s. They really let the juice flow back then and they would give the patients a wooden dowel to bite down on as they zapped them with enough current to run 3 commercial air conditioning units during peak summer weather. Most hardware stores will be glad to cut the dowel down to size for you at no charge.

.**If you weigh more than 195lbs, chug down 3 highly charged 16 oz caffine drinks, or what the young call "energy drinks".

Kevinh5 (talk|edits) said:

9 February 2014
Yes, NMexEA, I have received several referrals from fellow practitioners dealing with tax court issues. So far, I have only used it for a stronger negotiating position, though I have prepared petitions first.

I was happy that Sherrill asked me to help her teach her exam-prep class. She has attended several of my classes in the past and knows I'm high energy.

She has a proven formula for helping students pass the exam. There are other competitors out there, but she has the best track record among all of the test preparation courses.

NMexEA (talk|edits) said:

9 February 2014
I'm glad to hear that. When you find yourself facing an actual trial, don't let your nerves keep you from doing it. You know what to do even if you don't think so.

One of the best serious felony defense lawyers I've ever met told me that he still nearly loses his breakfast just before a jury trial. I was never that bad but like him, once I would get started, my nerves would calm down completely. Point is, being scared is normal and shouldn't stop you.

Gazoo (talk|edits) said:

10 February 2014
I applaud Kevin's taking the time to point out that Sherrill is "high energy" and if she follows my advice she will stay that way. I have no doubt she will pass the exam.

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