IRS Audit

How to Deal with a Tax Audit from the IRS

How to Deal with a Tax Audit from the IRS
Written by Pauline Ho

In a recent interview with FOX, I revealed what to do during an IRS tax audit.

When asked to comment, I said, “It’s always a daunting prospect when you receive a letter from the IRS requesting an audit. Here are a couple of things to keep in mind if you do get audited that will make the process easier.”

After receiving the letter of request, I said that it’s important to do your homework.

“Be as well prepared as possible so you can manage your expectations and ensure that the audit doesn’t go sideways. You’ll be able to find information in the letter of request about which type of audit the IRS wants, which will allow you to determine how serious the audit is and how you will communicate with the IRS,” I said.

The IRS might perform a correspondence, office, or field audit.

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“Correspondence audits aren’t as severe and only require that you send any requested documents to the IRS. Office and field audits mean that you or your representative must meet with the IRS tax auditor,” I added.

Being prepared for your meeting with the auditor is crucial.

When asked to elaborate, I said, “You’ll be asked a series of questions by the auditor during the session. There are online resources that you can study beforehand that provide useful information on questions asked based on the type of audit.”

Being able to answer questions easily will make the auditor’s job go more smoothly and sets the ground for a more productive collaboration.

“Don’t be afraid to be thorough with the auditor. Chances are the audit is not going to be over after the meeting, meaning you’ll be in contact again. Make sure to set deadlines for each step of the audit and ask questions about anything you don’t understand. Showing eagerness is likely to impress tax authorities,” I said.

Another way to ease the auditing process is by asking for help from tax professionals.

When asked to elaborate, I said, “Tax professionals – such as an enrolled agent or certified public accountant – are there to help guide you through each phase of the audit. A big advantage of hiring a tax professional is that they can also represent you and meet with the auditor on your behalf.”

About the author

Pauline Ho

Pauline Ho was born in Hong Kong and educated in Hong Kong and the United States. She is a U.S. CPA in both Florida and Washington states and a U.K. Chartered Accountant. She has a Bachelor’s of Science in Accounting from Hong Kong, a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Andrews University of Michigan, and a master’s Degree in Accounting from University of Central Florida.