Your Rights Within IRS Disputes or Audits: Vol I

If you are involved in a dispute with IRS or are currently undergoing an audit, you should be aware of your rights to appeal tax determinations within IRS. This approach tends to be less costly and formal than litigating the matter in court, and often results in satisfactory resolution of the issues involved.
You can file an appeal with the IRS Office of Appeals (Appeals) in your region if you disagree with the result of your tax examination. The appeal can be filed before you file a Tax Court petition, or even after one is filed (but before litigation). You can also file an appeal to contest certain penalties, or after rejection of a refund claim or compromise offer in a collection case. Under special procedures, you can also appeal a lien, levy, or seizure by IRS, as well as an IRS rejection of, or attempt to terminate, an installment arrangement for tax payments.
A taxpayer can request early referral of certain eligible unresolved issues from the IRS’s Examination Division to Appeals. It is also possible to resolve a tax dispute through a mediation process in limited situations. The tax law requires the  IRS to prescribe procedures under which either taxpayers or Appeals can request nonbinding mediation on any issue that is still unresolved after the conclusion of either: (1) appeals procedures or (2) unsuccessful attempts to enter into a closing agreement or a compromise. The IRS has established procedures for requesting mediation of certain issues for cases that are already in the Appeals administrative process. If the parties do not reach an agreement on an issue being mediated, they may request arbitration for the issue if the issue meets the requirements for arbitration.
IRS also has “fast track” programs under which certain taxpayers that are already under examination can get an expedited resolution of their cases.
Watch for our next blog post on other options for appealing IRS findings.  Contact our office with questions and more information.
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