JDC Volunteer Helps Pro Bono Clients Navigate Complex Tax Laws

 

Jason Galek

Jason Galek

Jason Galek is the Justice & Diversity Center (JDC)’s Volunteer of the Month for his service to low-income people facing tax issues. Through JDC’s Low Income Taxpayer Clinic (LITC), Galek represents clients in their cases with the IRS, and also helps through limited-scope representation before the U.S. Tax Court. Galek is certified by the California State Bar’s Board of Legal Specialization in taxation law and sits on the California State Bar Taxation Section’s Executive Committee. JDC is grateful that he generously offers his expertise to our clients.

Early post-college work at a public interest law firm sparked Galek’s interest in pro bono work. After he became a tax attorney, Galek saw the need for pro bono assistance with tax law, which is complicated and affects nearly every aspect of life. People under financial hardship don’t know how to address tax issues yet lack the resources to hire professionals. Galek volunteers with LITC to help people resolve disputes with the IRS more effectively.

Galek represents pro bono clients full-scope in a variety of tax controversy matters. In one case, he secured an Offer in Compromise settling a client’s unpaid taxes for a fraction of the amount originally owed, despite the fact that he received a large but contingent source of income after submitting his Offer. The IRS could have rejected the Offer for that income increase, but Galek advocated for the client and obtained an excellent result.

Galek also provides limited-scope representation to pro se taxpayers through the U.S. Tax Court’s Day of Docket Program. There, he provides on-the-spot advice to unrepresented taxpayers on the potential merits of their case, and advises on the tax court process and procedures in preparation for trial.

Galek grew up in northern New Jersey, but has been in the Bay Area since high school and considers it home. He attended UC Berkeley and McGeorge School of Law before pursuing his L.L.M. in taxation at Golden Gate University.

If you’d like to volunteer with JDC’s Low Income Taxpayer Clinic, please contact its Supervising Attorney Amy Spivey at aspivey@sfbar.org.