Our firm specializes in all phases of federal and state tax controversy work. Typically, a taxpayer will file a return and years later receive a notice that their return is under audit. While this may be an extremely stressful event for the taxpayer, the IRS and state tax authorities give taxpayers many opportunities to dispute additional assessments. The IRS will send a 30-Day letter with the proposed deficiency, which gives the taxpayer an opportunity to protest the deficiency. If the taxpayer timely files a protest, the case is sent to appeals to resolve the dispute. If the taxpayer fails to protest the proposed deficiency, the IRS will send a Notice of Deficiency 90-Day Letter, which allows the taxpayer to file a petition with the United States Tax Court. If the taxpayer misses this deadline, the tax is assessed regardless of validity. If a Tax Court Petition is filed, the case is sent to appeals to attempt to resolve the dispute. If no agreement can been reached, the case moves forward to prepare for trial. Most of the time, the case is resolved with IRS Chief Counsel’s Office prior to litigation and a decision document is signed which determines the deficiency or overpayment. It is very important to hire a licensed experienced tax attorney as soon as possible in an audit or correspondence examination due to the number of deadlines and opportunities to settle disputes early, which can reduce stress and cost on the taxpayer. Our Atlanta Tax Attorneys are able to diligently and quickly research the issues, help the taxpayer gather necessary documentation and evidence to defend or support their claim, and most of the time, greatly reduce the tax and penalty assessment. Even if a taxpayer has missed their opportunity to dispute the tax through the normal channels discussed above, the taxpayer still has options to dispute and correct the tax. These options include:
- Audit Reconsideration
- Offer in Compromise Doubt as to Liability
If an additional amount of tax is assessed from an audit or the taxpayer was unable to pay the tax due when they filed their return, we are able to provide a vast array of options to deal with the tax debt. Once an amount is owed, the IRS typically will send a Notice and Demand for Payment within 60 days of assessment. Then the IRS will follow with a series of letters (CP14, CP501, CP503, CP504) requesting payment and threatening to levy (Notice of Intent to Levy). The most important letter is the CP90 or LT11 Final Notice of Intent to Levy. Again, this letter is so important because it provides the taxpayer an opportunity to appeal the collection action, gives the taxpayer time to work out an agreement, and prevents any actual levy action. Thus, it is highly important that a taxpayer seek counsel as soon as possible so they do not miss any statutory deadlines and we have an opportunity to resolve the matter prior to collection action. The first priority for our firm is to:
- Avoid Bank Account Levies, Wage Garnishments, Social Security Levies, etc.
- Avoid Tax Liens
- Avoid Seizures of Assets including but not limited to 401Ks and Real Property
Our firm works diligently to find the best cost-effective solution based on the amount of tax owed and the taxpayer’s financial ability to pay. Some of these options include:
- Abating Penalties (if possible based on individual circumstances of case)
- Negotiating Payment Plans (72 month, 84 Month, or Partial Pay Installment Agreements)
- Placing Taxpayer in Currently Non-Collectible Status
- Seeking an Offer In Compromise Doubt as to Collectibility or Doubt as to Collectibility with Special Circumstances
- Bankruptcy Filing (Chapter 7, Chapter 13, Chapter 11)
- Innocent Spouse Relief
If you would like more information please contact us today at (404) 551-5838 for a free one hour consultation with Alyssa Maloof Whatley, Atlanta Tax and Bankruptcy Attorney.