Tax Audit Lawyers in Collinsville
A "tax audit" in Illinois is the process by which the proper tax authorities (either the IRS, at the federal level, or its state equivalent) investigate a tax filing in more detail than they do for ordinary filings, typically because there appears to be a discrepancy, or some other suspicious item, in somebody's tax returns. However, the IRS (and state tax authorities) sometimes do rounds of unexpected audits, where they audit taxpayers at random, without necessarily suspecting them of any wrongdoing.
In Collinsville, Illinois, the process of a tax audit is usually not perplexing. If you get a letter saying that you have been chosen for an audit, you should still take it seriously, however. The first thing you need to do is confirm that you are truly being audited, because there are fraudsters who impersonate tax collectors, attempting to squeeze money out of innocent victims. When you receive such a letter, you should use the phone book or Internet to find the contact info for the government agency that the letter claims to be from, and contact them. Do not rely on any contact information provided in the letter, as it may direct you to the scammer, who will just pretend to be a representative of the IRS.
Once you have made sure that your audit is indeed real, you can do a few things to get prepared for it. Most especially, you should collect all of the documents that the auditor has asked for, as well as any further documents and evidence that you think might help clear up any confusion about your tax return. You should bring these to the meeting with the auditor, and truthfully (to the best of your knowledge) answer all of the questions that the auditor asks.
Reasons For a Tax Audit in Collinsville, Illinois
There are various different reasons why the federal government, or the tax authorities of Illinois might decide that a tax audit is warranted in your case.
As mentioned earlier, you might get audited just because you were chosen at random. If this is the case, and you know that your tax return was totally truthful, and have the documentation to back it up, you shouldn't have anything to worry about.
On the other hand, some taxpayers in Collinsville, Illinois are audited for a particular reason, rather than being drawn at random. If the tax authorities believe that you have underreported your income, that is a very frequent reason for a tax audit. For example, if you claim on your tax return that you make ,000 per year, and, in the same year, buy an expensive luxury item, the tax authorities will wonder where you got that extra money, and why you're not paying taxes on it.
Likewise, attempting to deduct a large percentage of your income is likely to raise suspicions. A tax deduction is a way to lower one's tax liability by making some of one's income non-taxable. Some customary sources of tax deductions in Collinsville, Illinois are business expenses and charitable donations. Some people, nonetheless, try to include incorrect deductions in their tax returns (attempting to deduct charitable donations they never truly gave, for example). A wide number of deductions will be highly suspicious to the tax authorities, and they will want to see evidence to support every deduction you claim, if you're audited.
How Can A Collinsville, Illinois Tax Lawyer Help?
If you are audited in Collinsville, Illinois, and believe that you have done everything right in collecting and filing your tax return, you likely don't have much to worry about. If there is anything wrong with your tax return, it was likely the result of an honest mistake, which will result in light penalties - typicallyy just an order to pay any back taxes you owe, plus interest.
However, there are some tax audits where the underlying facts are much more complicated than a simple misunderstanding. In these cases, a good tax attorney in Collinsville, Illinois may be necessary to ensure that the process is as painless as it can possibly be.