How to Deal With a Notice from the IRS

handling IRS noticeIf you’ve ever seen a black and white IRS envelope land in your mailbox, your first response may be, “Oh, no!” What should you do when you receive an IRS notice?

According to the IRS, you shouldn’t panic. A simple response may be all that is required.

An IRS letter may simply be a request for more information or a payment, or it may be a notice of a refund due to an overpayment. It may notify you of a change to your account or an adjustment that the IRS made. Or they may have a question about a recent payroll deposit.

Whatever you do, don’t just ignore the letter. Each IRS notice contains specific instructions which you should follow exactly. For example, if the IRS corrects your tax return, you should review your information and make sure you agree. There may be no further action required, or the IRS may require a payment.

If you disagree with the notice, respond within the time frame required. Send supporting documents for the IRS to review, and include the tear-off portion of the notice. Include your Social Security number or your employer identification number (EIN) with your correspondence. Mail the reply to the address on the notice, and allow a month for a response.

If you have a question, call the number on the notice or visit a local IRS office. Make sure to have the notice with you, as well as supporting documents such as the tax return in question.

Keep a copy of the notice with your records, and remember that the IRS never communicates with taxpayers via email.

You can visit Understanding Your IRS Notice or Letter for more information about the specific notice you received. Look for the notice number in the upper right-hand corner of your notice and find it on the IRS page.


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