If you receive one, don’t panic

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Receiving a notice from the IRS might cause instant panic, but there is typically no reason to alarm yourself. Following are a few reasons why the IRS might send you a notice:

  • You have a balance due.
  • You are due a larger or smaller refund.
  • There is a question about your tax return.
  • Your identity needs to be verified.
  • The IRS needs additional information.
  • Your return has been changed.
  • There are delays in processing your return.

Generally, the IRS issues notices to request payment of taxes or additional information. Each notice offers specific instructions on what you need to do to satisfy the inquiry. To avoid any possible interest and penalty charges, you’ll want to be sure to respond to any inquiry quickly and pay as much of any amount due as possible.

Receiving a notice doesn’t necessarily mean you did some­thing wrong, but the worst thing you could do is ignore it. Instead, contact me right away to review the correspondence and, if necessary, respond to the inquiry. In most cases, the IRS requires a response within 30 or 60 days.

And beware of scams, which continue to be on the rise. These include mail, email and phone scams. Keep in mind that the IRS sends notices and letters by mail only, so if you receive a call or email from someone claiming to be from the IRS, it’s more than likely part of a scam. If you receive a piece of mail from someone claiming to be from the IRS, be sure to bring it to me so I can verify its legitimacy before taking action.