Many people, even those that don’t really do anything dishonest, dread a tax audit. Mainly because random audits do happen, no matter how rare. If you’re one of the unlucky ones who are due for an audit, what do you do?
First Things First: Don’t Panic
The first thing you need to do is verify whether you’re really being audited. A letter from the Internal Revenue Service does not necessarily mean that you’re going to be audited – most of the time the agency just needs to clarify something. Read the letter and start from there.
If It’s an Actual Audit Letter, Find Out Why
If the letter you received is an audit letter, you first need to check which part of your tax return is concerned. An IRS auditor will usually only focus on certain portions of the tax return. Unless you did something really big and dishonest with your tax returns, you don’t have to worry about defending the entire thing.
Once you know which part of your tax return is being audited and why, you should start preparing. This constitutes gathering documentation that will help support your claims. Ideally, now is the time to seek the services of a tax attorney in Sacramento.
A tax lawyer will be able to advise you on your next few steps and will be able to defend you in court better than other types of tax professionals. Just remember that even with legal representation, there is no need to antagonize or be hostile to the IRS auditor. Be polite, courteous, and follow your tax lawyer’s advice.