IRS Audit Defense and Appeals (IRS Tax Attorney)

Facing an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) audit can be an anxiety-filled experience for both individuals and businesses. The IRS has extensive resources and authority to conduct thorough examinations on tax returns, potentially leading to additional tax assessments, penalties, and interest. However, taxpayers don’t have to face this challenge alone. A skilled Philadelphia tax attorney specializing in IRS audit defense and appeals can be an invaluable asset for a taxpayer in navigating the complex tax landscape, protecting taxpayers’ rights, and securing fair outcomes.

An IRS audit is an examination of a taxpayer’s financial records, deductions, and other supporting documentation to ensure compliance with tax laws. Audits can be random, triggered by red flags on a tax return, or related to specific transactions. 

If selected for an audit, the IRS will notify the taxpayer via mail, providing details about the type of audit and the specific items under examination. The notification will include a request for additional information or documents, as applicable. It is at this point an experienced tax attorney may need to be engaged. Upon receiving the notice, the taxpayer will need to promptly gather all relevant records, receipts and supporting documentation to substantiate the items being audited. The audit process can be categorized into two main stages: examination and appeals. 

During the examination phase, the IRS reviews the taxpayer’s tax returns and related documents. This process may be done through mail or in person interview and review. The auditor may request additional information, interview the taxpayer or their representatives, and analyze financial records. It is at this stage that the taxpayer may need the assistance of a tax attorney to ensure they provide the necessary information while safeguarding their rights and minimizing potential risks.

Attorneys specializing in tax law possess a deep understanding of the IRS audit process, enabling them to effectively communicate with IRS agents and respond to audit inquiries with clarity and precision. A tax attorney can develop a sound strategy for handling the audit, and proactively addressing areas of concern to reduce the likelihood of adverse audit outcomes. 

Importantly, tax attorneys can act as a crucial buffer between the taxpayer and the IRS, protecting their clients from aggressive tactics and ensuring the taxpayer’s rights are respected throughout the process. Furthermore, tax attorneys assist in compiling and organizing the necessary documents and records to support the taxpayer’s positions and strengthen their case during the examination.

After the examination, the IRS will render their findings of the audit to the taxpayer and their legal representative which may include adjustments to tax liability. If the adjustments lead to additional taxes owed, the taxpayer will receive a Notice of Deficiency. 

It is certainly possible that a taxpayer disagrees with the auditor’s findings. If a taxpayer disagrees with the auditor’s findings during the examination, they have the right to appeal the IRS’s decision. The appeals phase involves presenting the case to the IRS Office of Appeals, an independent body separate from the IRS examination division. The taxpayer must file a formal appeal within the specified timeframe (usually 30 days from the date of the examination results notice). A tax attorney will be able to assist you with this time frame and make sure your appeal is filed timely.

A skilled tax attorney can assist in building a compelling case based on facts, legal precedents, and interpretations of tax law to present the taxpayer’s position persuasively before the Appeals Officer. Furthermore, tax attorneys are skilled negotiators, capable of engaging in discussions with the Appeals Officer to find mutually acceptable resolutions and potentially settle the matter without resorting to litigation.

However, in cases where the appeal is unsuccessful, attorneys can assist in filing a petition with the United States Tax Court. This is the legal recourse that allows their case to be heard by an impartial judge who will decide the matter based on the merits of the arguments and evidence presented to the court. Tax attorneys represent taxpayers in the United States Tax Court proceedings, advocating for their clients’ interests and providing a strong defense against the IRS’s position.

As you can see, navigating the IRS audit process and, if necessary, the appeals process can be a daunting and complex undertaking. However, individuals and businesses do not need to confront the IRS alone. Engaging the services of experienced attorneys specializing in IRS audit defense and appeals can make all the difference in achieving a favorable outcome. With their in-depth knowledge of tax laws, strategic insights, and advocacy skills, these attorneys provide invaluable support, protecting taxpayers’ rights and interests through the audit process. 

If you are facing a tax audit from the IRS or are just looking for tax advice in general, the team at Premier Legal Services, PLLC are here to help you navigate the complexities of tax law. Contact them at (267) 245-0649 or for a consultation.