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IRS Audit

Do not face the IRS on your own when you are being audited.  The professionals at Equity Search know how to work with the IRS on your behalf to minimize your risk during an audit.  The most important thing you need to do is not ignore the notice from the IRS.  The sooner you can meet with us the more time we will have to compile all necessary documents requested by the IRS.  We know what your rights are as a taxpayer and how the audit process works so you don’t have to worry. 

No matter how simple you think your audit may be, we advise taxpayers to never represent themselves before the IRS.  The most important reason that we suggest this is because it can be very intimidating working with the IRS.  The representative that is auditing you is looking to find an error that you may have made, which is why you should have someone working for you.  An audit can be very time consuming and requires you to gather large amounts of records.  Let Equity Search handle all of this for you so that you never have to meet with the IRS.

IRS Appeals

The IRS Appeals office allows taxpayers to appeal a decision that has been made by the IRS.  The goal of the appeals office is to resolve tax issues without litigation on a basis that is fair to the government and the taxpayer.  There are 2 factors in determining whether Appeals is the place for you: if (1) you received an IRS correspondence explaining you have the right to come to Appeals to dispute the decision of the IRS and (2) you do not agree and are not signing an agreement that was sent to you by the IRS.

Delinquent Tax Returns

If you have not filed your tax returns in years and no longer have any of your records don’t worry.  Equity Search can work on your behalf to contact the IRS and receive copies of the records that they have.  In most case we can obtain those records in a few days.  It is essential when filing delinquent tax returns that you report all income that has been reported to the IRS.  In many cases, if you have not filed your tax returns, the IRS will file returns for you.  These returns are called SFR’s (substitute for return).  When the IRS does this they usually do not give you all the deductions that you may be entitled to, resulting in a large tax bill showing a large amount of tax being due.  In addition to the tax being due, the IRS will start charging you interest and penalties every day until the balance is paid in full.  Equity Search has been very successful with clients who have delinquent tax returns.  In many cases we have been able to get our clients current with their filings and in the end, when all is said and done, many receive a refund from the IRS.

IRS Wage Levy

A wage levy is when the IRS garnishes an individual’s pay in hopes to pay off their tax debt.  A wage levy continues until the entire debt is paid or arrangement is made to pay off the debt.  When served on your employer, garnishments are taken as part of the payroll process.  An IRS wage levy can negatively affect your credit and your ability to receive a loan or open a bank account.  When filing a levy the IRS does not need a court order because a levy filed by the IRS is considered to be an administrative levy.  The IRS only needs to fulfill the following requirements: the tax must have been assessed and a written notice and demand for payment must be made; the taxpayer must have neglected or refused to pay the tax within the time stated on the notice; and the IRS must have sent a final notice of intent to Levy and also a notice of your rights to a hearing at least 30 days before the levy is issued.  One important fact to know is that it is illegal in the United States for an employer to fire you because of a wage levy.  Federal law prohibits employers from doing this and if they are caught they will get fined and could face imprisonment of up to a year.  It is possible to get a levy released, however, there are steps that need to be completed first before the IRS will release the levy.  The most important thing that needs to be done is that the taxpayer needs to be in full compliance, meaning that all their tax returns to date are filed. 

The main purpose of a levy is to satisfy a debt.  So once your are compliant you then need to work with the IRS to develop some form of resolution on your outstanding taxes.  Equity Search will work with the IRS to get the levy released and develop a form of payment that both the taxpayer and the IRS can live with.

Payroll Tax

The worst thing that an employer can do is not pay the IRS the payroll taxes withheld from an employees wages.  When this happens the responsible parties’ in the organization can be assessed personally and the IRS can go after the responsible parties personal assets.  The IRS sees the nonpayment of payroll taxes as the most severe form of delinquency, because a large part of payroll taxes are the employee’s withholdings.  The IRS sees the nonpayment of payroll taxes as theft.  The direct result of this is severe penalties being charged to the company, which can increase the amount that is owed significantly.   The IRS will assess the responsible parties the trust fund penalty if they feel that they were willful.  The responsible party is a individual that has the power to pay, power to determine which bills are to be paid, and the power to make a decision.  The IRS determines willfulness as someone who has control over corporate funds, determines preference of other creditors and has the knowledge that the tax is outstanding.  The IRS determines who they see as the responsible and willful party during the initial interview that they conduct.  You should not be at this interview alone.

 If you are behind on your payroll taxes you need to call Equity Search.  The IRS is very aggressive when it comes to collecting past due taxes.  When you owe payroll taxes you should never meet with the IRS alone.  When they conduct their initial interview, how you answer their questions is critical.  Equity Search knows what questions the IRS will ask and we can guide you to answer those questions correctly.

Estimated Taxes

It is important that you make your estimated tax payments to avoid being charged interest and penalties.  Equity Search can determine if you do need to make estimated tax payments and when the payments need to be made.  Estimated taxes are basically taxes that you pay as you earn money so that at the end of the year you are not hit with a large balance due and owing.  If the IRS determines that you should have been making estimated payments, penalties and interest will be assessed.

State Tax

All states except Alaska, Florida, Nevada, New Hampshire, Tennessee, South Dakota, Texas, Washington, and Wyoming impose an income tax.  Usually the filing requirements, collection techniques, and penalties are very similair to those of the IRS.  When it comes to owing the state it is best to seek representation.  All states, except for Nevada, share taxpayers’ information with the IRS.  In most cases, if you owe the IRS, you probably will owe the state taxing authorities as well.  Many states actually act on IRS supplied information and will usually respond quicker than the IRS.

Equity Search can assist you with not only federal tax problems but also with state tax problems.