About 1.1% of taxpayers are selected for a tax audit each year. The IRS examines tax returns to verify that the tax reported is correct. Some of those people are selected randomly, others have items on their returns which raise a red flag and trigger the audit. Whichever category you fall into, you should know your rights, know what to expect, and know that you are entitled to be represented by a tax professional that can assist you with every aspect of the audit.
Upon receiving a letter informing you of the audit, you'll be required to phone within 10 days to acknowledge the letter and schedule an appointment. It's important that you do this in a timely fashion. Within the letter, or during that call, you will be advised on what items are being called into question. Depending upon your ability to obtain the supporting documentation, you will make an appointment with the IRS auditing agent. You may choose to have representation before you make that appointment, because a tax specialist will advise you of the time frame you'll need to prepare for the meeting and in most cases you do not have to appear, your representative, power of attorney, would handle the audit for you.