If you've received an audit notice from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), you may be feeling alone—since it is you against an enormous federal bureaucracy. However, even if that may be how you feel, you don't have to go it alone. You can have professionals help you prepare for the audit, and they can even go with you to meet with the IRS and represent you during the audit.
HOW AN ACCOUNTANT CAN HELP WITH AN AUDIT
Whether you prepared your taxes or you hired an accountant to prepare them, you should review your return and deductions with an accountant before an audit. While some returns are chosen at random for an audit, you should look for any deductions or other entries that might have served as catalysts for the audit. If you identify these, make sure you have the evidence and explanations for these items. Then ask your accountant about any questions you have about your filing.
An accountant can also help you organize your receipts and other documentation in a way that will make sense to both you and the auditor.
HOW A TAX ATTORNEY CAN HELP WITH THE AUDIT
You should consider hiring a tax attorney to represent you in an audit. An audit is a legal proceeding, and whatever you say to the auditor can be used against you in subsequent proceedings. If the auditor decides any issues with your return weren't due to an honest mistake—but were intentional— you may face tax fraud or other criminal charges.
That's why it is important to have a tax attorney review your return and attend an audit with you: So they can identify any potential problems and help protect you from inadvertently opening yourself up for any liability.
If you owe any money, your attorney can help negotiate with the IRS to reduce the amount you owe, work out a reasonable payment plan, or develop other options. And, if necessary, your attorney can help you decide if you should challenge the audit's results.
HAVE EXPERIENCED TAX COUNSEL AT YOUR SIDE
If you've received an audit notice, don't wait: Get an experienced tax attorney to review your returns and discuss your options as soon as possible. If you need help, call Senior Partner, Tax Controversy Attorney, and former IRS attorney Brandon A. Keim at (602) 200-7399 or contact him online to discuss your options.