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Audited? Here’s why you should consider an appeal

| May 24, 2016 | back taxes or tax debt

With April 15 behind us, many persons are feeling relieved, knowing that their returns have been filed. However, for a certain group of persons, their business with the IRS has only begun. For a few, a tax audit may be in store, which is something that most people fear.

For many, this fear is unfounded, since it is based on misconceptions. For example, many people believe that tax audits occur rather frequently. However, one of the most persistent myths is that there is nothing that can be done in such a situation. Fortunately, the reality is if you are faced with a tax audit, you have rights.

Your right to fight back

If the auditor believes that there are errors, discrepancies or omissions in your tax return, you may end up owing the government money (or even owing penalties, criminal fines or interest). However, it you disagree with the auditor’s findings, you have the right to appeal the decision, much as you have the right to appeal an unfavorable court ruling.

In order to handle the appeal, the IRS has created a separate branch called the Office of Appeals. The function of this office is to provide an impartial platform for taxpayers to plead their cases. Appeals officers have more flexibility and authority in making decisions than auditors. In fact, their job performance is judged by their ability to reach a successful compromise with you, rather than their strict adherence to an auditor’s findings.

Why you should appeal

Unfortunately, most Americans choose not to file an appeal and miss out on the many advantages of doing so. The main benefit of appealing is that it can significantly reduce (or eliminate) previously assessed taxes and penalties. According to data, the average taxpayer can see the dollar amount owed reduced by 40 percent. Additionally, filing an appeal delays the due date of your assessed taxes, giving you more time to find the funds necessary to pay them off or work out a payment plan.

To maximize your chances of success on appeal, it is essential that you exercise your right to competent legal representation. The experienced tax attorneys at Kundra & Associates PC can fight on your behalf to secure the most favorable outcome possible.