IRS Appeals: Where To Begin

Are you considering an IRS appeal? Understanding the process can help determine whether an appeal is right for you. You’ll need to make sure you meet the relevant criteria and have ample documentation available to show the decision you’re appealing was unwarranted. 

Here’s what you need to know about beginning an IRS appeal. For professional assistance with IRS appeals from a CPA or tax attorney, contact Levy & Associates Tax Consultants today. 

Ensure You Meet the Criteria

Not every tax dispute comes with the option to appeal the IRS’s decision. You’ll want to ensure you qualify for administrative appeal rights before you start this process. 

Under the Taxpayer Bill of Rights, you may file an appeal if all of the following are true:

  • The IRS sent you a letter explaining your right to appeal. 
  • You disagree with the IRS’s decision. 
  • You have not signed and will not sign the agreement form from the IRS. 

An appeal only makes sense if you believe the IRS acted in error, did not properly apply tax laws to your situation, misinterpreted your finances, or took an inappropriate collection action against you. If you’re thinking of filing an appeal simply because you can’t pay your tax bill, look into a tax resolution option instead, such as an installment agreement or Offer in Compromise. 

Review the Different Types of IRS Appeals

Depending on the amount of money you owe the IRS, you may be able to file a small case request instead of a full appeal. You may qualify for this option if the total taxes and penalties you owe for each tax period are $25,000 or less. Alternatively, you may use a Fast Track Settlement (FTS) process in which you meet with an IRS appeals mediator to settle your debt. 

If you’re appealing a collection decision, you have a few options:

  • Collection Appeals Program: A method of appealing tax liens, levy actions, seizure, or changes to an installment agreement. This process is usually quick but bars you from taking the IRS to court if you agree with the decision. 
  • Collection Due Process: A hearing allowing you to dispute the amount you owe and discuss alternative collections.
  • Offer in Compromise: An agreement to settle your tax liability for less than the full amount if you are going through financial hardship.

Gather Your Resources

You’ll need to submit several documents as part of your request for appeals. Gathering all of this information in advance can save you time and ensure you have what you need once you begin your written protest. 

Generally, you’ll need all of the following information:

  • Your name, address, and phone number
  • A copy of the letter from the IRS
  • A statement saying that you want to appeal IRS findings
  • The tax periods the appeal involves
  • Your reason for disagreement
  • Evidence and facts supporting your reason for disagreement
  • The law you believe the IRS has violated, if any

Now is an excellent time to contact a tax attorney or CPA for assistance. The IRS permits one of these professionals to represent you during the appeals process. They can also ensure you have enough evidence to submit an appeal. 

File a Formal Written Protest

Finally, you can submit your formal written protest to request an IRS Appeals Conference. Submit your request within the time limit indicated in your letter; this limit is usually 30 days from the date the letter was sent. 

The IRS doesn’t make the appeals process easy. If you need help navigating an appeal or exploring other options, contact Levy & Associates Tax Consultants today at 800-TAX-LEVY.

Contact Levy & Associates for Dependable Tax Audit Services

Levy & Associates is available for free initial consultations. We’re happy to answer any questions you have about the audit process or address any concerns about your specific situation.

There’s never a good time to be audited, and the time-consuming process will take away from your business or family if you try to face it alone. Let us handle and coordinate communication, so you can return to your daily life.