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  • Bob Brooks

What to Do If You Get a Visit by the IRS

Tax expert Dan Pilla warns that the IRS is stepping up collection efforts by ramping up personal visits. Here is what he had to say in his monthly letter Pilla Talks Taxes:

"The plan is to carry out a series of personal "visits" by Revenue Officers with citizens who have ongoing tax delinquency issues. The IRS declares that the purpose of the face-to-face meetings is to "help resolve tax compliance issues." Said another way, they want to collect the tax by whatever means is necessary."

Dan spells out what to do if you are part of a surprise visit by an IRS Revenue Officer.

Dan says, most importantly, "Don't give financial information on the spot. The Revenue Officer will ask you to complete IRS Forms 433-A and B. These are financial statements. These forms are very detailed and specific, and they are signed under penalty of perjury. They must be accurate and complete. You cannot accomplish that on the spur of the moment under stress imposed by a Revenue Officer who's "just here to help."

Dan also says to take advantage of your rights and your right to an appeal. He also warns that there is a specific amount of time that you have to file an appeal. Dan says, "It must be filed by the deadline stated in the letter. If you blow that deadline, you lose important appeal rights, and the IRS can enforce collection immediately."

Finally, Dan says, don't ignore the problem. The IRS gives you ample opportunity to communicate through correspondence. Once they exhaust that process, then they take action. Dan writes that the notice warns, "When necessary, Revenue Officers will take the appropriate actions to collect the amount owed." This means that in the absence of some firm plan to resolve the case, Revenue Officers will pull the trigger on liens, levies, and seizures. Please make no mistake about it. The problem will not go away on its own.

For more information on every resource, you need to fight a tax problem, go to Dan's site

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