This week, we are talking about owing the IRS money. In my book: Everything You Wanted to Know About the IRS – Audits, Appeals, and Collections, I discuss these topics in great detail. This week I will be providing condensed chapters from the book.
If you have ever had to deal with the IRS, you might have been intimidated or scared. You might have just blindly signed something to get them off your back. You may have had an IRS Agent show up at your door, and demand money. If you don’t pay they made it sound like it was the end of the world. The IRS is the most notorious collection agency around. Whenever a Revenue Officer tried to throw their weight around, I always like to remind them of my client’s rights. Rights you say? That’s right you have rights. If you don’t believe me go to www.irs.gov and type in the search box Publication 1. I’ll wait…take your time…I have nothing planned today…see you have rights. So what exactly are those rights? Let me explain them to you.
First let’s start with what YOUR obligations are:
· Be honest (I can’t stress this obligation enough)
· Be cooperative
· Provide accurate information and documents on time
· Keep records
· Pay taxes on time
· Be informed about tax laws (or hire me to do that for you…)
Now that that is out of the way let’s move on to what your rights are.
1. First and foremost, you have the right to have an IRS employee explain and protect your rights as a taxpayer. That’s right; they have to explain your rights to you. Just ask them and they have to explain your rights to you.
2. You have the right to have someone represent you. If you are in the middle of an audit, or collections issue and you don’t understand something or you think that you are getting into territory that you might get yourself into trouble; you have the right to ask the IRS employee to stop, so that you can consult a professional. They have to stop immediately, and provide you adequate time to hire a professional.
3. You have the right to privacy and confidentiality-so that any information that you disclose to the IRS is kept confidential. Now, if you owe large sums to the IRS, they have the right to contact third parties and let them know that you are being investigated, but they can’t disclose the scope of the investigation.
4. You have the right to know why the IRS is asking for information, and how they plan to disseminate that information. They have to tell why they want something.
5. You have the right to demand professional, respectful treatment from any IRS employee that may be dealing with you.
6. You have the right to represent yourself before the IRS (I wouldn’t recommend exploring this right).
7. You have the right to make a sound recording of any meeting that you have with the IRS. In order to use this right, you must give the IRS a ten day warning. You must inform them in writing that you plan to use this right. I wouldn’t recommend using this right, but know that it is available to you.
8. You have a right to not pay any more than the correct amount of tax that you owe under law. This one is a given.
9. Here’s one for you; you can force the IRS to waive penalties when you can show that you acted reasonably and in good faith. In addition, they have to remove penalties if you relied upon the incorrect advice of an IRS employee
10. Finally, you have the right to appeal any decision on your tax liability or collection action
Like I said; you have rights!
For more information visit www.smalleynco.com
If you have any questions you can email Craig W. Smalley E.A.
Author of the books: It Starts With an Idea – Tax Tips for Small Businesses available on Nook and Kindle, The Ultimate Real Estate Investor Tax Guide, available on Nook and Kindle, The Complete Guide to the New Tax Law – American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 available on Nook and Kindle, Everything You Wanted to Know about the IRS – Audits, Appeals and Collections available on Nook and Kindle, Tax Avoidance is Legal! The Complete Guide to Individual Income Tax available on Nook and Kindle, and The Complete Guide to the Affordable Care Act’s Tax Provisions available on Nook and Kindle