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Cigarette and Tobacco Manufacturers, Distributors, and Wholesalers

Whether your company has just been notified of a cigarette and/or tobacco excise tax audit, is in the middle of one, or is in need of excise tax compliance services, our expert specialists can help.

When your business is facing an excise tax audit, sales and use tax audit or wondering how to respond to one, McClellan Davis has the tobacco excise tax lawyers and excise tax experts who can help. Since 1980, our firm has represented thousands of clients — including dozens of California tobacco manufacturers, distributors, and wholesalers for excise tax audits and appeals. 

McClellan Davis can provide your business with excise tax audit management & defense, excise tax appeals, claims for refund or reverse audits, or professional compliance help for an audit by the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (formerly known as the Board of Equalization), or other state taxing agency. Our excise tax attorneys, CPAs, former auditors and consultants have a significant amount of experience with excise tax liabilities and are able to provide you with the expertise you need to competently address your concerns.

Our staff of former state tax auditors and tax attorneys offer a variety of services for tobacco and cigarette manufacturers, distributors and wholesalers, including:

  • Excise Tax Audit Management: Because many of our professionals are former tax auditors, supervisors, reviewers or trainers, they have the insider knowledge needed to guide you through the audit process. We can even have the audit transferred to our office, in some cases. We work directly with the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration to minimize interruptions to your business, permitting you to focus your time and resources on what matters most – operating your business!
  • Excise tax audit defense and appeals:  If your audit results in an overstated sales tax liability, we can file a petition for redetermination and represent your business through the administrative appeals process.  Our excise tax attorneys and auditors have a very high rate of success obtaining reductions to excise tax liabilities.  Contact us today for a consultation. 
  • Settlements and Compromises: In cases where the best course of action is to settle, our tax consultants prepare and submit paperwork, negotiate with the state and seek to resolve the case with a favorable settlement.
  • Refund Claims and Reverse Audits: In situations where your business has overpaid the tax, we will work with you and the agency to get your money back by filing an excise tax refund.  Usually, we are able to do this on a contingency fee basis — so if you don’t get money back, you pay us nothing.
  • Compliance Services:  The best way to defeat an excise tax liability is to avoid it from being assessed in the first place.  Our expert tax advisors can provide you with the necessary excise tax guidance to enable your business to accurately report the correct amount of tax due on your purchases of tobacco products. 

What to do When You’ve Just Received an Audit Notice?

If your tobacco or cigarette distribution business has just received notice of a tax audit, McClellan Davis can create a custom strategy for your California excise tax audit. We’ll work directly with the state auditor, handle all correspondence and do everything we can to allow your business to continue to operate without significant interruption. Call our office to speak to one of our professionals; we’ll be glad to provide you with a free, no obligation, consultation to address your excise tax audit concerns.

What to do when you receive a bill?

Whether your audit was managed in-house or by an outside advisor, McClellan Davis can review the results and advise you of your options so an informed decision can be made. Sometimes the most prudent business decision is to accept the results of an audit, but you need to have the right person review the results to make the right decision. Typically, we are able to uncover opportunities for significant adjustments to your excise tax liability and we will provide you with a free consultation and/or a capped fee audit review to ensure you have the information you need to make the right decision.

Why Choose McClellan Davis, LLC?

McClellan Davis has a long history of helping businesses with a variety of tax liability and compliance issues. We’ve represented thousands of clients — from small sole proprietors to large multinational corporations. Our qualified staff of former state auditors and attorneys, our focused practice on sales, use, and excise tax, coupled with extensive experience provides us with a unique ability to help your business. If you are a California tobacco or cigarette manufacturer, distributor, or wholesaler dealing with California excise tax complications, let us help. Our consultants are highly qualified and able to give you the support you need.

Read our blog regarding some of the recent regulatory changes and some of the common problems tobacco and cigarette manufacturers, distributors and wholesalers have when facing an excise tax audit:

Contact us today or set up a free consultation to learn more.

Some of Our Cigarette and Tobacco Client Results