What to Do When You Get the IRS Audit Letter
Getting an IRS audit letter can be scary. What shoud you do first? Contact Hutton Tax Solutions for professional information, advocacy, and advice. Call now!
Dealing With IRS Audit Letters
Many individuals and organizations often panic when they hear that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is about to audit their finances. The IRS typically notifies you of an imminent audit through an audit letter. If you have received one, there is no need to be apprehensive. All you need to do is contact a skilled attorney that can provide help with IRS tax problems.
What Is an IRS Audit Letter?
An audit letter is a medium the IRS uses to notify you of an impending audit of your finances and tax returns. This complies with federal law that requires appropriate notification before an audit is conducted.
This notification usually comes by mail, so be careful not to disclose your tax information to anyone who claims to be from the IRS over the phone.
Why Am I Being Audited by the IRS?
Receiving an audit notification is nothing to worry about. You might have been randomly selected for an audit by the IRS using statistical data. It could also be that an associate of yours, such as a spouse or business partner, is having their finances audited. In such an instance, your audit would only occur as a routine.
You can receive an audit letter under the following circumstances:
If there are errors on your income tax return
If your income is understated or you failed to report an income source
If there is a mismatch between your declared income and that contained in your W-2 tax form
If there are money laundering and fraud concerns
How Is an IRS Audit Letter Delivered?
The IRS uses certified mail for audit notices. Certified mail operates as a service of the United States Postal Service (USPS), allowing them to confirm delivery of the letter.
The IRS using this service minimizes the risk of an audit letter getting lost in transmission. It also allows the IRS to track the delivery process, even where delivery failed.
How to Identify an IRS Audit Letter
So, you have received an envelope and are unsure if it’s from the IRS. The only way to find out is to open the envelope and read its contents. Several details let you know that you have received an authentic IRS audit letter.
First, you should know that most IRS letters are referred to as notices. The audit notice number is usually in the top right corner of the letter. In addition, you will find the IRS logo on the top left of the letter.
The IRS letter will also identify your name, Social Security number, address and contact information, and employee ID number. The letter will then outline the nature of the issue at hand and explain what you need to do to satisfy the claim the IRS has against you.
The letter will usually have the name and signature of the IRS tax examiner handling your IRS audit.
IRS Audit Letter Envelope
The IRS letter will come packaged in a white envelope. You might be tempted to disregard it, but the IRS ensures you don’t. At the top center of the envelope are bolded enclosed words that read out “Important Tax Information Enclosed.” This is to help the recipient know that the letter’s contents are from the IRS and should be addressed promptly.
It would help if you also looked out for the official seal of the IRS on the envelope to be sure you’re not dealing with fake mail from scammers.
How to Respond to an IRS Audit Letter
The sooner you reply to an IRS audit letter, the better. Usually, the IRS gives you a window of 30 days to either reply using a letter or makes contact through phone call. Delaying your reply to the letter could get you penalized.
Replying allows you to get further information on your IRS audit. In this instance, you can make an appointment to do a face-to-face audit at a local IRS office. You can find the nearest one here. You’ll be able to work through all the pending issues with your tax return.
Also, depending on why the IRS is auditing you, you need to prepare the relevant documents that will help you explain your case to the IRS. At this point, it might be wise to involve an experienced tax attorney as well to ensure that no mistakes are made.
What Your Response to the IRS Should Contain
If you decide to write a response letter to the IRS, there are a few details that you should not miss, including:
- Your Tax ID number, full name, contact information, employee or business ID, and the name of the IRS agent that is handling your case
- A detailed answer to the questions contained in the audit letter.
- Support your claims with all necessary documentation, such as bank account statements, should be attached.
It is important to note that letters to the IRS should leave no room for error. An IRS Tax Attorney in Oklahoma may be able to assist you with preparing an appropriate IRS response letter that explains the issues raised by the IRS if you are unsure how to prepare one. In addition, you also enjoy attorney-client privilege, which protects you against unauthorized disclosures.
Get Help With Your IRS Audit Letter
Whenever you receive an audit letter from the IRS, it’s important to take it seriously and address the issues raised promptly. However, the technical tax language might sometimes leave you unsure how to respond.
The good news is you don’t have to face this difficulty alone. At Hutton Tax Solutions, our experienced tax lawyers can help you with your audit letter response to the IRS and other related tax issues. We can also help you meet your goal as you strive to comply with the legal requirements for a successful audit. Give us a call today to get started.