Articles Posted in IRS audit advice

Continued from our prior blog post.

The Most Common IRS Red Flags that could trigger a Tax Audit:

16. Claiming 100% business use of a vehicle – When you depreciate a car, you have to list on IRS Form 4562 of what percentage of its use during the year that you claim (testify on a Federal form by your signature) was for business. Claiming 100% business use of an automobile, especially if you have no other vehicles available for use, can be a red flag; so being conservative here is advisable.

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TAX AUDIT – DO IT SMOOTH

It is not uncommon for the IRS to conduct a tax audit on a company any uncalled day. The very news that the IRS would be paying a visit can cause undue, unnecessary stress for any individual/ organization. While a tax audit is just routine procedure conducted by the IRS, it has however gained a notorious reputation of being an extremely nerve wracking process for the taxpayer. To make the tax audit process an easy journey, the IRS is and has always made best of its attempt.

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IRS Audit Overview

Pre-audit Analysis
An in-depth pre-audit analysis is essential to conducting a quality examination. IRS Examiners, Revenue Agents, should prepare a comparative analysis of the taxpayer’s returns for multiple years to assist in the identification of:

• large, unusual and questionable items,
• missing schedules, statements and/or elections
• inconsistencies between different years, and
• audit potential.

A successful IRS taxpayer audit depends upon what is done before the interview. The IRS examiner should obtain as much information about the taxpayer, be organized, and prepare an interview outline that is tailored to the taxpayer under examination. As preliminary information is gathered, it should be carefully reviewed and documented for the IRS tax audit.

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First and foremost, you must respond to any IRS Notice.

If you receive a letter or notice from the IRS, it will explain the reason for the correspondence and provide specific instructions. Many of these letters and notices can be dealt with simply, without having to call or visit an IRS office.

The notice you receive covers a very specific issue about your account or tax return. Generally, the IRS will send a notice if it believes you owe additional tax, are due a larger refund, if there is a question about your tax return or a need for additional information.

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Do you owe back Taxes? Did you receive an audit letter from the IRS?

First, do not to panic. The IRS uses various letters to communicate with taxpayers about IRS back taxes and IRS tax audits. As with most IRS communications, there are strict deadlines associated with these letters that you have to meet. You should seriously review the items that are being challenged and prepare your factual response in a clear way to the IRS. As taxpayer, you can represent yourself, or hire a professional tax representative as a power of attorney to resolve your tax matters. Selecting a tax return for audit does not always suggest that the taxpayer has either made an error or been dishonest. In fact, some audits result in a refund to the taxpayer or acceptance of the return without change.

We represent clients before the IRS to resolve their tax controversies. The tax law is complicated and a professional will be better able to guide you through the audit experience, or to effectively resolve your back tax matter.

Employment and Payroll Tax Audit & Examination:

The IRS announced its plan to audit the first 6,000 employment tax audits and small business will be their audit target. The IRS will start examining 2,000 companies every year over the next 3 years.

The IRS will utilize its audit findings to target a select group of businesses and aggressively audit their payroll tax and refine estimates to close the tax gap. IRS audit agents are specially trained to audit employment and payroll tax for the audited businesses.

What are your chances for being audited? IRS’s 2008 data book provides some clues IR 2009-22

Mike Habib, EA Tax Relief & Tax Problem Resolution

IRS has issued its annual data book, which provides statistical data on its fiscal year (FY) 2008 activities. As this article explains, the data book provides valuable information about how many tax returns IRS examines (audits), and what categories of returns IRS is focusing its resources on, as well as data on other enforcement activities, such as collections.

TIGTA assesses how well IRS Examination function scrutinizes all open tax periods during audits [Audit Report No. 2009-30-034]:

IRS Examination function employees do not always appropriately inspect and examine prior and/or subsequent year tax returns when warranted, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) said in a new audit.

Auditors reviewed 68 statistical sample cases and found that 13 (or 21%) of the cases warranted scrutiny of additional returns but none were selected for examination. In 26 (or 38%) of the 68 cases, “there was no evidence that examiners inspected either the prior or subsequent year return to identify similar issues to the years under examination or if large, unusual, or questionable items existed that would warrant examination,” the audit said. Factors that might be considered include the comparative size of an expense, if the nature of the item is significant, the beneficial effect of the manner in which an item is reported, and missing items on the return.

IRS OKs use of one property to engineer a reverse and forward like-kind swap Chief Counsel Advice 200836024

In Chief Counsel Advice (CCA), IRS has given its blessing to the use of one property to engineer both a completed reverse like kind exchange and an attempted forward like kind exchange. The forward exchange was necessary because the value of the relinquished property far exceeded the value of the replacement property that the taxpayer received. Because the forward exchange couldn’t be completed within the statutory time limits, however, the taxpayer wound up paying tax on the net cash it received.

Observation: The new CCA is noteworthy because it shows how far the like-kind exchange rules can be stretched, with IRS‘s approval, to accommodate complex conditions.

IRS Tax Help

by Mike Habib, EA

UNFILED BACK TAX RETURNS

Do you have back tax returns that are Unfiled? Are you missing the records and forms necessary to file your tax returns? I have the experience and procedures to help you in reconstructing the records necessary to file your back tax returns. The IRS will not allow you to file an offer in compromise or get an installment agreement if you are not current on filing your back tax returns. If you have a refund coming to you and you file more than 3 years past the due date, the IRS will keep the refund. It is important to get your past due returns filed and I can prepare them for you. Get tax help now.

IRS Tax Audit Help

If you have been notified by the IRS that your income tax return has been selected for examination, it is very important that you do not disregard notices. If enough time has passed without cooperation on your part, you will lose any right you have to present your side of the story to explain the income or deductions on your return. We have seen many taxpayers who have ignored IRS requests and ended up paying tax, penalty and interest on overstated income or legitimate deductions.

If you are being audited, we can represent you before IRS and advocate your position to explain and push for every valid deduction possible under audit. If you have received an audit notice, please call us as soon as possible so that we can begin working on your case while it is in the early stage of the audit.

Offer in Compromise – OIC Tax Help

The IRS, the State, and other taxing authorities would allow individual or business taxpayers that cannot fully pay their entire tax liability to settle their tax obligation through the Offer in Compromise Program. This is a great opportunity for the qualified taxpayer to settle their entire tax debt for less than they actually owe. The IRS, the State, and other taxing authorities sets specific rules and guidelines for accepting an Offer in Compromise. When evaluating an Offer in Compromise, the taxpayer’s past, current and future financial situation are analyzed before an Offer in Compromise can be accepted. Contact us today to see if you would qualify for an Offer in Compromise, as each individual or business financial situation is different.

Installment Agreement – IA Tax Help

The IRS, the State, and other taxing authorities would allow individual or business taxpayers that cannot fully pay their entire tax liability to settle their tax obligation through an Installment Agreement which allows taxpayers to pay their taxes owed through monthly installment payments. We can negotiate the payment amount and the time frame for the installment agreement on your behalf. When we establish an Installment Agreement for you, it would be a negotiated amount you can afford to pay and live with based on your financial condition. To effectuate an installment agreement, the taxpayer must be compliant by being current with all tax filing requirements before entering into an installment agreement with the IRS, the State or other taxing authority.

Currently Non Collectible – CNC Tax Help

Currently Non Collectible – CNC is accomplished when the IRS holds off an individual or business taxpayer’s account from active enforcement collection efforts. There are specific rules and requirements that a taxpayer must meet before a CNC status be accomplished. The IRS would not pursue enforcement collection activity against the taxpayer and possibly the statute of limitations on the entire tax liability will run. CNC is a temporary status and if the taxpayer’s financial situation changes, the IRS could start enforcement collection on the delinquent tax account.

Wage Levy / Wage Garnishment / Wage Attachment Tax Help

The IRS, the State and other taxing authorities are actively collecting taxes for the United States Treasury, the State and other localities. If an individual or a business taxpayer can not or refuses to pay their taxes, the IRS, the State and other taxing authority will enforce collection activities through direct contact such as field visits, demand letters, and collection phone calls. The taxpayer should never disregards the demands for delinquent tax payment as the IRS, the State and other taxing authority will be exercising their levy power to collect their delinquent taxes. Wage levy and wage garnishment is enforced to collect the delinquent taxes owed by the taxpayer. Contact us today to negotiate the release of your wage garnishment, and stop your wage levy and save your paycheck.

Bank Levy Release Tax Help

The IRS, the State and other taxing authorities are actively collecting taxes for the United States Treasury, the State and other localities. If an individual or a business taxpayer can not or refuses to pay their taxes, the IRS, the State and other taxing authority will enforce collection activities through direct contact such as field visits, demand letters, and collection phone calls. The taxpayer should never disregards the demands for delinquent tax payment as the IRS, the State and other taxing authority will be exercising their levy power to collect their delinquent taxes. The bank levy is enforced to collect the delinquent taxes owed by the taxpayer. Contact us today to negotiate the release of your bank levy, and save your bank account from being frozen or wiped out.

Payroll Tax Problem Representation Tax Help

We actively represent business taxpayers with payroll tax problems before the IRS and or the State. We help business owners and corporate officers understand and adhere to various payroll tax requirements. Our clients usually never meet or deal with the IRS or the State directly, instead we handle all the payroll tax resolution directly with the IRS and or the State. Delinquent payroll tax is a very serious matter and should be addressed quickly for a favorable resolution as business owners, corporate officers and potentially other employees could be personally liable. Businesses should be current and compliant to reach a final settlement.

Taxpayer Account Review Tax Help

The Taxpayer Account Review service is to help individual and business taxpayers obtain specific balances and information about their tax account with the IRS, the State, or any taxing authority. Most taxpayers receive inaccurate and usually incomplete information from the IRS, the State, or other taxing authority. The Taxpayer Account Review is vital for taxpayers to receive exact and accurate information about their tax account including penalties and interest assessed. We will provide you a detailed account break down for the years in question detailing tax amounts, any credits or payments, and penalties and interest assessed. This is a great tool for root cause analysis to find out what is driving your tax liability

Penalty Abatement Tax Help

For most taxpayers, the accumulated interest and penalties are as much as, or more, than their original tax debt! If this is your situation, we can help by requesting what’s called a Penalty Abatement. A penalty abatement works like this: If we can show reasonable cause, the IRS may agree to reduce or even eliminate your penalties altogether. What’s reasonable cause? Generally, some kind of hardship beyond your control which prevented you from paying your taxes. It can be as simple as explaining to the IRS that your basement flooded, that you received bad tax advice, or that you or one of your family members suffers from a severe health problem. We can tell you whether you are a candidate for a penalty abatement when you call for your free consultation.

Innocent Spouse Relief Tax Help

An Innocent Spouse is spouse “A” who has become liable for income taxes from a joint return filed with spouse “B” when spouse “B” has caused the income taxes to underpaid by mistake or fraud, and spouse “A” signed the return believing the return to be true and correct. For spouse “A” to be entitled to relief under the Innocent Spouse rules, spouse “A” must be able to prove when signing the returns, he or she did not know or have reason to know that at the time filing, the return either understated income or overstated deductions.

Federal Tax Lien Help

Federal tax liens are a public record stating that you owe federal taxes and are filed in the county you live. Because the tax liens are public records they will show up on your credit report. This often makes it difficult or impossible for a taxpayer to obtain financing, even for an automobile or home. The tax liens need to be reviewed to determine if they are valid. If the tax liens are valid, a strategy must be developed to deal with the IRS tax liabilities.