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Know your taxpayer rights

Posted on May 6, 2019

Teipen Selanders Poynter & Ayres, LLC wants you to know that you have ten fundamental rights as a taxpayer.

Outlined in the Taxpayer Bill of Rights, this IRS taxpayer agreement defines the rights of all taxpayers. It’s good to understand these rights, prior to interacting with the IRS:

  • Right to be Informed – You are entitled to clear explanations of tax-related laws, procedures and outcomes as well as instructions, publications, notices and correspondence.
  • Right to Quality Service – You have the right to receive prompt, courteous and professional assistance in all dealings with the IRS.
  • Right to Pay No More than the Correct Amount of Tax Legally due (including interest and penalties).
  • Right to Challenge an IRS position and be Heard – You have the right to raise objections and provide additional documentation in response to IRS actions or proposed actions and receive a response if the IRS does not agree with your position.
  • Right to Appeal an IRS Decision in an Independent Forum – You are entitled to a fair and impartial administrative appeal of most IRS decisions including penalties. You generally have the right to take your case to court.
  • Right to Privacy – You have the right to expect that any IRS inquiry, examination or enforcement action will comply with the law and be no more intrusive than necessary. During these proceedings, the IRS will respect all due process rights, including search and seizure protections.
  • Right to Confidentiality – The IRS may not disclose your tax information unless authorized by the taxpayers or by law. The IRS must take appropriate action against IRS employees, return preparers and others who wrongfully disclose return information.
  • Right to Retain Representation – Taxpayers have the right to retain an authorized legal representative of their choice during dealings with the IRS. When a taxpayer cannot afford representation, they may seek assistance from a low income taxpayer clinic.
  • Right to Finality – Taxpayers have the right to know the maximum amount of time allowed to challenge an IRS position. You also have the right to know the maximum amount of time the IRS has to audit a particular tax year or collect a tax debt.
  • Right to a Fair and Just Tax System – Taxpayers have the right to expect fairness. The IRS must consider all facts and circumstances that might affect any liabilities, the ability to pay or the ability to provide information. You also have the right to receive assistance from the Taxpayer Advocate Service, which can help taxpayers who are experiencing financial difficulty or when the IRS has not resolved tax issues properly and timely through normal channels.

The CPAs at Teipen Selanders Poynter & Ayres know these rights forwards and backwards. We are here to help provide navigation through any difficulty you may have in working with the IRS to resolve tax issues, as well as to provide you with information and guidance along the way.

Have a tax, business or financial problem? Let’s set up an appointment and talk it through. Chances are good we can help.