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How To Handle An IRS Notice (And Avoid An IRS Scam)

You received an IRS tax letter!

Don’t panic, but don’t ignore it, either (although the temptation may be strong).

Take a deep breath and remember that Sherman Oaks Accounting & Bookkeeping powered by One Source Services, Inc. is here to help.

Our knowledgeable, experienced Accountants will protect your assets and limit your liabilities while working to resolve matters as quickly as possible.

First things first: review the notice carefully. It could have instructions for what you need to do and there’s usually a lot of valuable information there.

The IRS sends out all sorts of notices including:

  • Balance due notifications
  • Refund adjustments
  • Notice of missing or unreported income
  • Questions about a tax return
  • Randomly selected taxpayer reviews
  • Taxpayer identity verification
  • Tax return revisions or corrections
  • Notification of a delayed return
  • Final notices of intent to levy and notices of hearing rights

Take timely action to minimize or avoid additional penalties and retain your right to appeal if you disagree with their conclusions.

When you respond or take action, be sure to include the LTR or CP number located at either the top or bottom right corner of the notice and keep a copy of all IRS correspondences with your tax records (digital copies are fine); this is very important.

Do not reply unless you’re instructed to or are disputing the notice, though.

It’s usually unnecessary to call the IRS but if you must, then write down the agent’s ID number, name, and the date and time that you spoke.

And be on the lookout for scams.

The IRS website says that thousands of people have lost millions of dollars and personal information to tax scams that have used the U.S. mail, phone calls, and e-mails to con businesses, individuals, and accounting professionals.

The IRS will NEVER initiate contact with a taxpayer by any means to request personal or financial information.

Don’t let nefarious impersonators fool you into thinking otherwise!

Sometimes, criminals will even encourage you to “verify” the validity of their call by giving you to a fake IRS number. Then their partner-in-crime will be standing by on the other end to impersonate the IRS and convince you that it’s not a scam (which it very surely is).

Scams can be related to natural disasters like hurricanes, taking advantage of taxpayers’ generosity during difficult times. They may impersonate the IRS with phishing e-mails and phone scams, conning honest taxpayers into disclosing sensitive personal information or paying fake tax bills.

The IRS website is a good resource with detailed scam alerts and helpful information about what to do when you receive a tax notice or are confronted with a tax-related scam.

Remember that the IRS will not call and ask you for personal information – ever!

If there’s a matter that must be addressed, then they will send you a notice. And One Source Services, Inc. dba Sherman Oaks Accounting & Bookkeeping will be there to help when you need us.

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