How to Survive an IRS Tax Audit

Here at True Resolve in Denver, our licensed, enrolled agents will show you how to survive an IRS tax audit. Whether it’s a business or individual tax payer audit, our professionals will act as your advocate, assist with all the complicated paperwork, even negotiate with the IRS on your behalf. We understand that the mere mention of the word “audit” can send anyone into a panic, but you can trust that we’ll help you successfully navigate the process step by step.

The Basics of an Audit

If the IRS has decided to audit you or your business, you’ll either receive a letter in the mail or an initial phone call followed by a letter with details regarding your IRS tax audit. First and foremost, try not to panic. True Resolve has worked with a number of clients where their returns required no changes, and we’ve even seen instances where the IRS ended up owing our client money.

You may be chosen for an audit randomly, due to your W-2 or Form 1099 not matching the information you reported on your return, or because of an association to another tax return that’s being audited. The IRS will be looking to confirm any discrepancies in your income, credits or deductions.

Your tax audit will be conducted in any of the following ways:

  • Correspondence – These days, many audits are handled completely by mail. They want proof of a deduction, you send copies of your receipts.
  • Office Audit – In this scenario, the IRS will ask you to bring all required documentation to one of their offices and meet with an auditor.
  • Field Audit – If the IRS sends an agent to conduct the audit at your place of business, this is likely a more serious and complicated matter.

Field audit aside, the IRS is typically more focused on a single year and even a single issue with your tax return. They’re not going to rifle through 10 years of returns line by line, or tear apart every aspect of your finances. However, the IRS will require very specific information and documentation. And they will be paying close attention to everything you say and do during the audit. Once you get the letter, it’s always best to call in the professionals like True Resolve to show you how to survive an IRS tax audit.

Tips for Audit Success

When you’re being audited by the IRS, it can feel incredibly intimidating. Just remember that you have rights. In fact, the IRS has created a Taxpayer Bill of Rights that includes:

  • The Right to Be Informed – You have a right to clear explanations, instructions and outcomes. Yes, you can politely push back, ask questions, seek clarification.
  • The Right to Quality Service – All agents and auditors you communicate with should be prompt, courteous and professional. You should not feel bullied or threatened.
  • The Right to Retain Representation – If you don’t feel comfortable dealing with the IRS on your own, you have every right to authorized representation like True Resolve.

Once you’ve been informed of your audit, your next steps are critical. First and foremost, don’t ignore the audit request. The IRS doesn’t just forget these types of matters. Ignoring them can lead to all sorts of issues, including liens, levies and wage garnishments. Also, whether you’re talking to an agent on the phone or corresponding by mail, only provide the specific documentation or information that’s been requested. Be honest, but be as brief as possible when dealing with an IRS tax audit.

Most importantly, be prepared, be organized and make it easy for the auditor to close the case. This is where the True Resolve Tax Professionals in Denver can save the day. Our licensed, Enrolled Agents will show you how to survive an IRS tax audit. We’ll help you with everything from understanding what the IRS is asking for to helping you with options if you don’t have the requested documentation. Want us to speak to the IRS on your behalf? No problem. Our professionals will be there for you, start to finish.