While the number of people audited in the US has risen slightly every year since 2008, the overall percentage of the population that receives audit notices each tax year is still relatively small. There are certain precautions you can take to help ensure that you don’t find your name in that list, however, and they are usually pretty easy measures to take if you don’t put them off.
- Always be honest on your tax return, and do your best to make sure that your figures are as accurate as it is within your power to make them. Many problems arise because people decide to be dishonest on their returns, but in the end they pay much more money in fees and penalties than if they had simply paid the full amount, up front, the first time they were asked to. If you weren’t entirely honest in the past, but you would like to correct your situation, contact a tax attorney for tax help, and you may be able to reach an offer in compromise.
- Double-check your figures. Incorrectly entered data is a huge red flag to IRS agents, and it is also one of the most avoidable on your end. You can prevent errors from poorly entered figures, simply by double-checking as you go along, and making sure that the information you are entering is entirely accurate and correct.
- Make sure you take realistic deductions, and don’t deduct unrealistic or strange itemized deductions. Even if they are accurate, an IRS agent is likely to mark these for an audit to be sure that you aren’t trying to skim money off of your total in an unorthodox and illegal manner. Once again, the money you will pay during or after the audit is completed will most likely be more than the original sum you owe.