Facing a tax audit from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) can be expensive and time-consuming. The attorneys at Surovell Isaacs & Levy PLC have extensive experience representing individuals and businesses in IRS audits and other tax matters. We have a history of successfully resolving IRS audits, collections and litigation matters in a timely and efficient manner.
Our legal team of former FBI Special Agents and former IRS attorneys have over thirty years of valuable first-hand tax law experience. We understand how the IRS initiates and conducts taxpayer audits. Our attorneys use our experience to represent individual taxpayers and businesses in Virginia and nationwide. If you’re facing an IRS audit or other tax matters, contact Surovell, Isaacs and Levy PLC at our Northern Virginia law office to schedule an initial consultation.
How Does the IRS Determine Which Taxpayers to Audit?
Keeping accurate records and making timely tax payments does not protect individuals or businesses from IRS audits. An IRS audit typically begins as an attempt to verify that the taxpayer correctly reported his or her income. The IRS uses several methods when selecting taxpayers or businesses for tax audits.
The IRS uses a statistical formula to select individuals and businesses for audit. If a taxpayer’s return varies from a statistically valid random sample of returns, the taxpayer may face an audit. The IRS uses statistics from the National Research Program to develop tax return standards.
Related Audit Examinations
IRS agents may select your tax return if it involves transactions with other taxpayers undergoing an IRS audit. An experienced IRS auditor reviews the chosen return and determines whether or not to forward the return to another examining group for an audit.
Receiving a tax refund or filing an amended return is not necessarily a trigger for an IRS audit unless the amended return contains other red flags.
If the taxpayer’s reported income does not match the income stated on a 1099 or W-2 form, the IRS may audit the taxpayer.
Foreign Accounts and Abusive Tax Avoidance
If the IRS suspects the taxpayer in promoting or participating in tax avoidance or has foreign bank accounts, an audit is more likely.
What Happens During IRS Audits?
The IRS notifies taxpayers that they’ve been selected for an audit by mail. The IRS may want to conduct an in-person interview at the taxpayer’s home, place of business, accountant’s office, or at a local IRS office. Taxpayers should contact Surovell tax attorneys for representation before meeting with the IRS. We recommend that Taxpayers Taxpayers not meet with or discuss tax matters with an IRS agent. We will represent the Taxpayer before the IRS, and we will respond to the IRS for information requests.
Taxpayers who are concerned about the quality of their accounting records, unfiled tax returns, collection or tax litigation matters should contact the skilled tax attorneys at Surovell Isaacs & Levy PLC. We can help you develop an effective IRS representation strategy that represents your best interests.
Throughout the IRS audit process, it is crucial to respond to all written requests on time. If you need more time to respond to the IRS auditor’s requests for more information, an attorney can contact the IRS auditor and request additional time.
In some cases, an IRS agent will determine that the tax return is correct and no change is needed. If the tax auditor determines that the tax return is incorrect, he or she will issue a Notice of Proposed Income Tax Examination Changes. Carefully reviewing the Notice is vital. A skilled Tax attorney will find any wrongful assessments of IRS penalties, adjustments, or computational errors. Once the examination report is issued, there is a thirty-day appeal process. It is important to have an experienced tax attorney to file an appeal. The tax attorneys at Surovell Isaacs & Levy PLC have filed many successful appeals.
A taxpayer can decide whether to agree or disagree with the examination report and adjustments to the tax return. If the taxpayer agrees to the terms, the IRS will send a collection notice within 4 to 6 weeks for the amount of unpaid taxes and any interest and penalties. If the taxpayer does not agree to the proposed changes, his or her attorney can request a meeting with the IRS auditor’s group manager. The taxpayer’s tax attorney can explain incorrect adjustments or changes that should be made to the examination report.
Taxpayer Rights with IRS Audits
At Surovell Isaacs & Levy PLC, we fight assertively for the rights of our clients facing IRS audits or other tax matters. The IRS must treat taxpayers with respect. U.S. taxpayers enjoy the right to an examination, appeal, collection, and refund process. Specifically, taxpayers enjoy the following rights:
- A right to confidentiality and privacy regarding tax matters
- A right to courteous and professional treatment by employees of the IRS
- A right to know why the IRS is requesting additional information
- A right to know how the IRS will use the requested information
- A right to know the consequences of not providing the requested information
- A right to representation by an authorized representative, such as a tax lawyer
- A right to appeal IRS determinations both within the IRS and in federal court
Why Hiring a Tax Attorney with Extensive Experience in IRS Audits Is Wise
The IRS has the resources to impose significant financial penalties. As unpleasant s dealing with IRS audits and other tax matters can be for taxpayers, taking a proactive approach is always beneficial. A tax attorney is the best professional to represent Taxpayers in tax controversies. When a taxpayer ignores a request for more information by the IRS or fails to attend an IRS meeting, the IRS will make adjustments to the tax return resulting in additional income and increased tax. The IRS will begin collecting additional taxes, penalties and interest resulting from the examination. The IRS has the power to collect the tax, penalties and interest using levies, wage garnishments, and federal tax liens.
Contact Our Fairfax County Tax Audits Attorney
At Surovell Isaacs & Levy PLC, we take a proactive approach in assisting clients with IRS audits and other tax controversies. Our attorneys investigate all relevant tax and accounting documents to determine whether the IRS audit, collection or litigation has merit. If the tax matter or audit is not warranted, we develop an effective strategy to demonstrate that our client’s tax return is accurate. If our client needs to contest IRS adjustments to a tax return, we attempt to reach the best solution for our clients.
It is essential to speak to a tax attorney as soon as possible after receiving notice of an IRS audit or other tax controversies. If you’re facing an IRS audit, the attorneys at Surovell Isaacs & Levy PLC can help. Contact our Northern Virginia law firm today to schedule your initial consultation.