Finally, the truth about audit support and IRS letters revealed….
WHAT DO YOU DO?
You could handle it yourself. If it is a letter wanting more money, it is usually because of something that was not properly reported, should not have been reported or was not allowed to be taken. All this is according to the IRS. However, their letters are not written for regular folks to read. They use language that only a professional can interpret. You may call the phone number on the letter (be prepared to wait a long time to get assistance). When you do get an agent (who is probably on the other side of the country), he or she may or may not be able to properly advise you (do you really think they are on your side and care at all about you and about being fair?). Did you know that according to IRS regulations (their rules of conduct) you cannot use advice given to you from an IRS agent as a defense? What! They admit that you cannot rely on their advice given over the phone. Feel better already don’t you.
What if it is an IRS audit? You want to handle this yourself? Go down to the IRS office, through their security and eventually meet face to face with an agent. He flashes the badge; this is the real deal. He begins with an interview, asking lots of questions. When you answer, you best remember that old adage “what you say here can and will be held against you”. It is scary. (Suppose you need to go to the bathroom; you actually have to be escorted.) Wow! This is serious business!
The auditor asks for your documents of proof. No big deal; you brought your papers and show them to him. What does he mean, “It is not the right proof”? Don’t you know the thousands of IRS regulations? You chose to represent yourself, and then you are expected to know all the rules? What’s more, did you not know that not all IRS auditors have much experience? (Right now the IRS has greatly increased the number of audits and so they are hiring people off the streets, giving them only quick training and then throwing them into the line of fire – rather, putting you in their line of fire). How would you know if they even know what they are doing?
Get this straight: the IRS is in the business of taxing you and collecting it. They may make an attempt to be fair, but do you really believe they are on your side? It is your own responsibility if you choose to represent yourself.
Under law the only persons that can represent you legally are the following:
Yourself, an Attorney, a CPA, or an Enrolled Agent (a person that has been licensed in all 50 states by the IRS).
What if you had your taxes prepared with one of those tax preparation software programs? They say they will give you audit support. Do you think they are going to send an attorney, a CPA, or an Enrolled Agent based on that little fee you paid? Read the fine print; it says “audit support”, which means they will help you represent yourself.
What if you had your return prepared by an ordinary tax preparer? If they are not an attorney, a CPA or an Enrolled Agent, then all they can do is assist you in representing yourself.
What if you had your return prepared by one of those tax franchises? Don’t they claim that they will give you audit support? Again this means that they will assist you in representing yourself. They are not legally able to represent you. AND, they are not even open year around.
THOSE ALL HAVE NO AUTHORITY
TO REPRESENT YOU BEFORE THE IRS
Your best bet is a seasoned Enrolled Agent. They are licensed, legally qualified, and open year around. Our firm, Accountable Solutions has decades of experience with the IRS. We know their language, their numerous rules and what can be allowed by an IRS agent; and we know when they are doing their job right and when they’re not.
Almost all of the issues that come up with the IRS concerning the preparation of your tax return are not due to tax preparer error. However, if we do make an error, we will correct the issue and bear the responsibility of any penalties or actions that must be taken with the IRS. That is a guarantee.
But, if something comes up with the IRS that is not our fault or if you get chosen for a dreaded audit , then there will be a fee charged to you for our representation. Many have mistakenly believed that part of the charge for preparing your tax return already included an IRS representation for free. That has never been true. If it had been, your return would have cost more than it has.
But, we are concerned because IRS activity has increased sharply in the last couple of years. The IRS has pleaded with Congress to increase audits and Congress has responded by sharply increasing their budget for these. Congress wants to spend more money and one way to get more money is to increase audits. Uncle Sam Wants You to Represent Yourself, so he can get more money.
Our firm offers many services including tax preparation, bookkeeping, consultation, payroll services and audit representation. Last year, the service that had the greatest increase above all was audit representation (those that did not buy prepaid audit representation). It was up more than 1000% over the previous year. The fees to represent someone may range from $1,500 to $10,000. I really hate it when a client who, although their audit may be simple, may require a fee of $1,500 from us due to the time it takes us to represent him or her. Even fighting one of those letters that is not an audit may cost $300 to $500 or more.
If you got one of those scary IRS letters, wouldn’t it be nice to know that you could call us up and we will call and/or go to the IRS for you and NOT YOU? You stay at home. Let’s make this absolutely clear. When you have your tax return prepared at Accountable Solutions, we guarantee that you will receive the largest refund or lowest tax liability allowed by law or your return is free. If you receive a letter from the IRS call us immediately. If the problem from the IRS is our fault, you will not be out one red penny.
However if we are not at fault or you received that dreadful audit notice we are offering you the safety and security of our “Prepaid Audit Representation”. For a small fee added to the charge for preparing your tax return, you can have the safety and security of knowing you are protected by a qualified, experienced EA who will fight your battles with the IRS. This means that when you get that IRS letter, you just send it to us and we handle it with no additional charges from us. Wouldn’t that be a relief?
Beginning this year, when your return is prepared we will determine which “Worry-Free Audit protection” program you qualify for and this fee will be automatically added to your invoice. When you receive your tax return you may agree to the protection by simply paying the fee or you may “Opt Out” of the protection and the “Worry-Free Audit Protection” will be removed from the invoice. Or you may choose to upgrade for this protection for other years. You make the choice. Here are the different programs available:
2012 Silver Membership
2012 Worry Free Audit Representation and correspondence assistance
2012 GOLD MEMBERSHIP
Individual IRS & State “Worry-Free Audit Representation” & Correspondence Assistance – ($99 value)
4 – 15 minute phone calls, 4 emails and 2 office visits – ($600 value)
Up to 1 hour of non-covered matters at no additional charge – ($175 value)
Priority phone, email and office access
Telephone calls and emails returned within 24 hours
Office visits scheduled within the same week if available.
2012 Correspondence Only
This pertains to only dealing with IRS or Oklahoma Tax Commission correspondence that does not include any audits
BUT WHAT ABOUT OTHER YEARS?
Did you know that you may receive letters and/or audits for back years at anytime (it is possible for them to go back 6 years). We offer coverage of those as well. Normally the cost of protection of all back years is $297. But until April 15th we are offering this great deal, because we think it is best that you are fully covered. For those that qualify for 2012 Gold or Silver we offer the following:
If you had not bought this protection before, you can cover all back years by purchasing the 2012 Gold Membership + $99 for a total of $228 or a savings of $69.
For those that bought audit protection previously for 2011, you may upgrade to cover all years by purchasing the Gold Membership plus an additional $20.00.
For those that bought audit protection for 2010 and 2011, by purchasing any 2012 program will automatically cover you for all years.
BUT I HAVE A CORPORATION OR PARTNERSHIP
I WANT THEM PROTECTED TOO!!
We also offer the same protection for Corporations and Partnerships as well. Here are the programs:
For all back years the price is normally $595, But until April 15th we are offering this great deal, because we think it is best that you are fully covered. If you had not acquired Audit Protection in previous years, purchase 2012 for $185.00 and 2011 for $185 and for an additional $75.00 get all back years. If you had previously acquired 2011, you may cover all back years with an additional $75.00. If you had previously acquired 2010 and 2011, you are automatically covered for all back years.
We offer all the above protection plans even if we never prepared any of the back years. Also these plans remain in force forever as long as you are a client.
2012 Worry Free Audit Representation and Correspondence Assistance
(Income Tax Only)
2012 Worry Free Audit Representation and Correspondence Assistance (Income Tax Only)