Tax Audit Stories: 2013

My story began in May of 2011 when the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) was inquiring about the education expenses of my member. He lives in Canada and was taking online classes at University of Phoenix to earn his MBA. We had all necessary documents with the exception of Form TL11A,…
As Audit Rep Assistants, we are asked to perform many tasks, such as recreating tax returns, completing bank analyses and preparing response packages for the IRS. The time spent on these tasks ranges anywhere from 5 minutes to 5 days, depending on the…
Like clockwork, every year we are inundated with audits for Head of Household filing status, dependents and Earned Income Credit. Quite often, after just one phone call to the Member, we find out that the dependent claimed really wasn’t the taxpayer’s qualifying dependent at all because one or more of…
This case was originally started in November 2011, and involved the 2009 and 2010 tax years. The Member lived in Texas, and the examiner was in Washington, DC. The Revenue Agent (RA) was conducting the audit by correspondence, which was unusual, but he was doing it that way because it…
The Member was living in Southern California in a large beautiful home when she received a “check a box” audit for mortgage interest paid. At TaxAudit.com, we call IRS 566 Letters “check a box” audits because the letter lists all of the possible issues one could have on a return…
A case assigned to me in late 2008 was one that had been handled by an outside rep and was coming inside to appeal. The Member had not been allowed to take his actual vehicle expenses over the employer reimbursed standard mileage rate on his 2005 & 2006 returns. While…
Defending our Members during a tax audit requires a lot of expertise and knowledge, that much is obvious. But there are also additional, more subtle skills required to make sure that our Members are fully taken care of, from the moment they receive their…
I recently helped a Member who was quite worried about the notice he received from the IRS. He did not understand what it was about, and he did not have the money to pay the $8,726 they were asking for. I assured him that we would be able to…
I have thought often about how my colleagues and I are like SUPER HEROES, making a difference every day in the lives of the people we defend. We are frequently faced with Members who are anxious and confused about why they are being audited. This is the part of the…
By the time I started working this case, the IRS Revenue Agent had already determined that the Member’s business restoring classic automobiles was not a valid business, but a hobby. He had disallowed the business losses claimed under the hobby loss rules, which allow expenses to be claimed only to…
One of our Members tried to obtain a loan for his business from a company in Brazil and all the communications were by e-mail. Unfortunately, the company was in the business of scamming people out of their money. Our Member took out over $100,000 from his retirement account for…
When I was first assigned this case, I could easily see the reason it had been selected for audit by the IRS. The Member had reported wages of $80,376 from a job as a commercial diver and a deduction against that income of $47,501 for unreimbursed employee business expenses. The…