Assessments and Substitute Filed Returns

The Internal Revenue Service and State Taxing Agencies will file a return for a taxpayer if the taxpayer hasn’t filed and income was reported under their identification number.


All of a sudden you receive a balance due notice for a tax period three years prior and you don’t understand where the assessment is coming from.  This is an extremely common issue.  The IRS and State Taxing Agencies will file a return for you if you have not filed.  They simply take the income that was reported under your social security number and tax you at the highest rate.   What this means is none of your expenses or deductions will be taken into consideration, your return will be filed as Married Filed Separate if you are married or as Single if you are not. Read more »


Your Tax Return is Being Audited: What to Expect

They Pulled Your Return for Review


I think it is safe to say regardless how good of a record keeper you are, when your tax return is pulled for an audit it is scary and intimidating.


There are different kinds of audits.  There is something called a correspondence audit and there is an actual audit.  When your return has been pulled for a correspondence audit, you will receive a letter disallowing expenses or deductions claimed on your return and given a deadline to substantiate your expenses and/or deductions claimed.   If a taxpayer doesn’t respond by the deadline, the expense or deduction that was being questioned will be disallowed and the additional assessment will be made.  If the individual responds timely with the applicable documents it generally works in the taxpayers favor.  The correspondence audit is a check and balance for the IRS.  Now that everything is done electronically, when your return is being processed, if the system doesn’t reconcile the expense or deduction claimed, it can flag your return for review.  As long as the deductions are legitimate and you have documentation, you will be able to prevent the assessment of additional tax. Read more »

Collections and Settlements

Anyone who owes the IRS back taxes, has probably heard the commercials about settling for less.  In order to reach a settlement with the IRS, you have to qualify for the program you are pursuing.  The qualifications are based on a financial analysis.  The most common reduction in past due tax comes from the IRS’ Offer in Compromise program.  In my opinion the Offer in Compromise is the best program offered by the IRS.  Once the Offer in Compromise is accepted and the offer amount is paid, your liability goes away as well as the tax lien.  There are requirements of course, once the IRS accepts an Offer in Compromise, a taxpayer must file and pay their taxes on time for the following five years.  In the event a taxpayer accrues new liability within five years of acceptance, the entire balance that was settled will be re-assessed, less any payments made.  It is okay to file an extension to file; you must still pay the tax on time. Read more »

Tax Help is Available

It is tax filing season and you know you are going to have a balance due; you are fairly confident you will be able to pay at least part of it, then catch the rest up soon.  You are not alone…Once you fall behind on past due taxes, it is almost impossible to remain current on your current year estimated tax deposits and catch up the past due tax in a timely enough manner.  The snow ball affect begins as well as the penalties.

Tax help is available; a lot of individuals don’t realize the amount of help there is out there.  We all have heard the ads on the television and the radio swearing you will only have to pay back 10% of what you owe Read more »