Know your rights during an IRS audit

As a taxpayer, you have several rights when dealing with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). It is good to know these rights all the time, but this knowledge is especially important if you have been selected for an IRS audit because your rights as a taxpayer do not go away when there is a tax dispute.

Some of your rights as a taxpayer include the right to:

  • Be informed. Under this right you are entitled to receive clear explanations on IRS forms and in correspondences with the IRS. It also means you have the right to be informed about any decisions the IRS makes about your account.
  • Challenge the IRS’s position. You can raise objections and provide additional documentation in a timely manner and expect your objection to be fairly considered by the IRS.
  • Appeal an IRS Decision. You can seek an impartial administrative appeal for many IRS decisions, including penalties.
  • Finality. You are entitled to know the amount of time the IRS has to audit a specific tax year or that you have to challenge the IRS’s position. You also are entitled to receive notification when the IRS has finished an audit.

Other rights include the right to privacy, confidentiality, quality service from IRS employees and a fair and just tax system. You also have the right to pay only the correct amount of tax, and the right to hire an authorized representative.

It is important to understand your rights when you deal with the IRS. By understanding and exercising your rights, you can help yourself achieve the best possible outcome for your situation.