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9 Steps to Surviving an IRS Audit


Posted in on January 20, 2017

The threat of being subjected to an IRS audit is a major fear of many taxpayers throughout the United States. An audit can be time consuming and it can be a major hassle. In a worst-case scenario, an audit can also result in you being found to owe back taxes and penalties if the IRS determines you did not declare all of your income or determines you cannot support the deductions that you claimed. 

A Maryland tax attorney can provide assistance to those who are going through an audit in an effort to try to protect their finances as they deal with the IRS inquiry into their tax returns.  You can also learn about some of the key steps you will need to take as you try to deal with the investigation.

Consider the Following Steps

If you are being audited, some steps you may wish to take include:

  • Reading your IRS notification carefully: You will be sent a letter from the IRS explaining the purpose of the audit. The letter may instruct you to send in further documentation and you should work with an attorney to send exactly what is asked.
  • Contacting your tax preparer: You can contact your tax preparer for information about your return and to see if the preparer has any guidance about responding to the audit.
  • Determining the role of the online tax filing company: Many people file their taxes online. Online tax prep services will defend their programs but do not do anything to defend users of those programs who are being audited.
  • Getting your paperwork together: You need to start assembling your documentation to provide proof to the IRS of the claims and assertions made on your return.
  • Responding by the deadline: You must make sure you provide required documentation and all requested information to the IRS by the deadline that the agency imposed upon you. If you need more time, make a written request for an extension to the IRS.
  • Avoiding offering more information than needed: If the IRS asks for specific information or documentation, only provide the minimum to satisfy their request. You don't want to give them additional financial information they could use to question other aspects of your tax return.
  • Maintaining a polite and professional demeanor: In all interactions with the IRS, you should be courteous to the representatives with whom you are dealing.
  • Researching options for fighting unfavorable audit results: You do not have to just accept it if the IRS says you owe money.
  • Getting help: You should consult with an experienced attorney who can be your guide throughout the audit process.

Knowing the steps to take during an audit is important, but at each different phase of an audit, you want to be as strategic as you can in protecting your financial interests. Contact attorney Kevin Thorn for help as soon as you can so you will have a knowledgeable legal professional advising you on the audit process and the steps you can take to protect yourself.

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