In our last post on IRS Tax Audits, we talked you through the initial shock of learning you are the subject of an audit. And we answered some questions, courtesy of the IRS, about how to prepare for the IRS tax audit process.
Today, the lead-up is over, and the audit begins; what can you expect? Tax attorney Joseph M. Arndt and the IRS Away team considers some of these questions, including the most important of all: Who can I turn to for IRS tax audit help?
IRS Tax Audit Question #5: How Long will the Audit Take?
There are a lot of variables. One might be how far the IRS is going back in your records. Generally, that’s is up to 3 years. They might go further if the situation warrants it, but they generally don’t go past 6 years.
Otherwise, there are a lot of logistics to consider: how complex is your case? Did the IRS receive all the info they need? Was everyone able to gather together in a timely manner? Will you agree with the IRS’ judgement, or will you contest it?
IRS Tax Audit Question #6: Do I Have any Rights Here?
You do have rights during an IRS Tax audit. These include the right to:
- Professional, courteous treatment
- Privacy and confidentiality
- Know what the IRS wants, why they want it, and what they will do if they don’t get it
- Appeal the IRS decision, even in a court of law
And, one of your most important rights:
- The right to qualified representation (and that’s why your first call should be to Tax attorney Joseph M. Arndt and IRS Away team!)
IRS Tax Audit Question #7: What are the Possible Outcomes?
When your IRS tax audit concludes, it can go one of 3 ways:
- No change: you have answered all their questions and provided sufficient documentation, and they are happy
- Agreed: they have determined that your return needs to be changed, they have determined what you owe (if anything), and you agree with them
- Disagreed: they have made their findings, and you DO NOT agree with them
IRS Tax Audit Question #8: Final Steps?
If you Agree, and you owe, you must sign off on the finding. Then you can look into payment plans. If you Disagree, you can request a meeting with a higher-up in the IRS structure. The IRS offers mediation, and also an appeals process if certain conditions apply.
IRS Tax Audit: Don’t Go it Alone!
As we said, during an IRS tax audit you have a right for courteous, professional treatment. This doesn’t mean friendly and stress-free. And don’t expect them to hold your hand and thoroughly educate you while you respond to their queries and decide your course of action. In short, you must go into the process confident and well-prepared. That’s why you need professional representation by Tax attorney Joseph M. Arndt and the IRS Away team. Contact us today!