Experience at Work
A tax litigator, and Chair of Capes Sokol’s Tax Controversy and Litigation Practice Group, Sara represents individuals and businesses in civil and criminal tax disputes involving the Internal Revenue Service, Department of Justice, and various state taxing authorities.
Since she began practicing law 15 years ago, Sara has defended individuals under federal investigation for tax and other financial crimes and litigated cases when charges are brought. Sara frequently advises individuals and businesses with sensitive tax problems such as failing to file tax returns, pay significant amounts of tax due, or disclose foreign assets and accounts, and assists them in getting into legal compliance and avoiding criminal investigation and prosecution. She defends clients in federal tax audits and has handled dozens of appeals before the IRS Office of appeals. Sara also has extensive experience litigating cases before the U.S. Tax Court, taking several cases to trial.
Sara has defended several lawyers and accountants in IRS preparer/promoter investigations and appeals, and has represented tax return preparers in injunctive proceedings brought by the U.S. Department of Justice and in criminal tax investigations. She frequently advises tax professionals with respect to matters involving Circular 230 and the IRS Office of Professional Responsibility.
In the Community
Sara is actively involved in local and national legal organizations. She currently serves as the President of the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis, as well as the Co-Chair of its Bench and Bar Planning Committee and a Member of its St. Louis Attorneys Against Hunger Committee. Sara regularly attends and lectures at meetings of the American Bar Association’s Taxation Section, and currently serves on its Civil and Criminal Tax Penalties Committee as Co-Chair of the Sub-Committee on Important Civil Developments.
Sara is an adjunct professor of law in Washington University Law School’s Tax LL.M. program where she co-teaches Tax Fraud Prosecutions. She serves on the advisory board for the University of Missouri—Columbia School of Law’s Tax and Transactional Law Society, and previously taught a course in Federal Tax Procedure for the law school.
In 2016, Sara and the other members of her practice group started the Capes Sokol Tax Controversy Symposium. This annual event provides free CPE credit to Certified Public Accountants in the St. Louis metropolitan area and covers topics relevant to their practices including ethics in tax representation before the IRS, criminal tax, audit defense, etc.
Since Washington University Law School opened its Low-Income Taxpayer Clinic in 2014, Sara has routinely lectured to law students on issues of federal tax controversy.
Sara is a member of Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in University City, where she serves on the school board, as a member of the finance committee, and as co-chair of the annual trivia night.