December 19, 2016

An IRS tax appeal is a common way of resolving disagreements with the IRS which apply to the items reported on your tax return. If your tax return was examined recently and you received written notice of an adjustment to your tax return, such as disallowing a credit or deduction, then you have the right to disagree and appeal the decision of the IRS.

Taxpayers need to know that IRS audits are not the only thing that they can appeal. Simply put, you are entitled to appeal any type of action or decision made by the IRS. This includes seizures, levies, liens, offers in compromise, audits or examination determinations, requests for penalty abatement or removal, installment payment plans, and innocent spouse decisions.

When is an IRS tax appeal the ideal solution to your tax problem? An IRS appeal may be the solution if you received a letter from the agency that explains your right to appeal their decision, and if you disagree with the agency’s decision and have a valid argument to appeal. In such a scenario, you must file a Request for Appeals Review within the time frame given—typically 30 days—and follow all guidelines enumerated for your appeals request to be deemed valid.

However, a tax appeal is not for you if you simply received correspondence from the IRS that was in the form of a bill and no mention of Appeals was made, and if your only concern is that you are unable to pay the amount owed.

Keep in mind the primary objective of the IRS Appeals Division is to settle tax disagreements to avoid court proceedings. It is a separate IRS office that reviews tax disputes independently and considers both the positions of the IRS and the taxpayer, striving to resolve any differences with regards to tax law application in a manner that is fair and impartial to the parties involved.

An appeals conference is a meeting that is informal in nature, in which a neutral officer settles the dispute. While you have the option of representing yourself, you may also choose to hire representation at an appeals conference, provided they are an attorney, CPA, enrolled agent, or any other individual authorized to practice before the IRS. If you are unable to arrive at an agreement with the Settlement or Appeals Officer, or if you do not wish to appeal with the IRS, you may choose to appeal certain actions in court.

Of course, it would be best to familiarize yourself with the tax code to determine whether an IRS tax appeal is indeed a feasible solution to your problem. If you are unsure as to whether appealing your tax dispute is the route for you, contact a knowledgeable tax attorney as soon as possible. An attorney can examine your situation closely and recommend the best course of action to take.

Categories: IRS, Tax Appeals