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What to Do if you Receive a Notice from the IRS

Aug 22, 2012
Article #127
Author: Peter S. Muffoletto, C.P.A.

Every year the IRS sends millions of letters and notices to taxpayers.

Receiving a notice from the Internal Revenue Service or other taxing authority can be a heart stopper, but this does not necessarily mean disaster is looming as in many cases the letter is merely asking for additional information based upon data they have received from other sources.

In the event you receive a notice there are specific procedures to immediately follow.

Generally the best option at this point is to contact us immediately as we deal with these matters on a regular basis.

The first and foremost issue is to deal with the matter right away.

We generally will have received the same notice as we file a Power of Attorney with the taxing authorities in your behalf so that we are ahead of them on all such matters for you, but do not assume that as many times the government offices that issue such notices do not always follow their own required procedures.

In some very rare instances that we have seen a notice that you may have received was in fact bogus issued by someone attempting to obtain your financial data, this is another very important reason to let us handle any such inquiries – be aware that the IRS does not issue notices via email, if you receive one by email, delete it immediately and give us a call.

Do not delay your response as there is a set time for response and if not met will lead to potential assessment of additional tax, penalties, and interest.

There are a number of reasons the IRS and other taxing authorities send notices or inquiries to taxpayers, most of which is to inquire as to information that they have received relating to your financial activities that was supplied by other parties that you may have done business with during the tax year in question that may or may not have been correctly enumerated in your tax return. Sometimes that is in fact the very question as in some instances those other parties may have provided that information to the IRS with the wrong Social Security number (SSN), not necessarily being your transactions.

The notice may request payment of taxes, notify you of a change to your account or request additional information.

The notice you receive normally covers a very specific issue about your account or tax return.

Each letter and notice offers specific instructions on what you need to do to satisfy the inquiry.

If you receive a notice about a correction to your tax return, you should review the correspondence and compare it with the information on your return, again it is best that you contact us immediately so that we can handle this matter appropriately.

Should you find that the notice is correct we will assist you in responding along with confirming that any assessment is correct as in many cases data maybe correct, but in some instances the assessment is wrong.

Should we find that the proposed correction is incorrect it is highly important that you provide us with documentary information to support your position that their assessment is incorrect.  

Generally it is best not to attempt to contact the IRS or other taxing authority by telephone as those at their call centers do not have the authority in most cases to change the proposed assessment without documentation to support your position, however, if there are questions or a need to delay the response we can certainly make the call for you, but again, we suggest that you do not attempt this on your own as these matters can quickly become much larger than they are if not handled appropriately.

Generally it will take approximately 90 to 120 days to clear a matter with the IRS and other authorities, and in many cases they may not provide you with a written resolution to the matter which is why we will follow up on the status of your issue with them on a regular basis.  

We here at Muffoletto & Company believe that the more informed you are in regards to the rules and regulations that affect you the more we can be of service.
Should you have questions relating to any tax or financial matters, or if you know of someone that could benefit from our assistance feel free in calling us at
(818) 346-2160, or you can visit us on the web at!

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