How to Handle Tax Notices
Tuesday, October 17th, 2017

If you have ever received a notice from the IRS, you are not alone. Every year, the IRS mails millions of letters to taxpayers for a variety of reasons. Then to add to the misery, states will also send notices of their own. While receiving a notice may cause some anxiety, tax notices can often be quickly resolved through a simple response letter. If you receive a tax notice, here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Scammers have recently started sending fake IRS letters through the mail, as well. To make sure that you do not fall victim to a scam, it is important to send us any tax notices you receive right away so that we can ensure that the notice is legitimate.
  • Always keep copies of any notices that you receive, and send a copy to your contacts at Soukup, Bush & Associates as soon as possible. 
  • Do not ignore the letter. Most notices are about federal tax returns or tax accounts.
    • Each notice deals with a specific issue and year and will include detailed instructions on what to do.
  • Respond timely to the notice, if you are required to provide a response.
    • If the notice deals with additional taxes owed and requests a payment, failing to act quickly could result in unnecessary interest and penalties.
    • Not all notices require a response; many are merely informational. It is important to read through each notice to determine what is expected of you. 
  • Some notices are sent to inform you of a change that has been made to your return. If you receive one of these notices, review the information and compare it with your original return.
    • If you agree with the changes, you only need to note the changes on your original return; no further follow-up is usually necessary.
    • If you disagree, you will need to mail a response letter explaining your reasoning. We are happy to assist you in this process.
    • In all cases, send us a copy of the notice.
  • Although tax notices include the tax agency's contact phone number, there is no need to call the IRS or state tax agency for most notices.
  • If you do need to contact the taxing authority by phone, be sure to have a copy of your tax return and the reference ID number(s) from the notice on hand.
  • The IRS and its authorized private collection agency will NEVER demand payment in a certain way, such as a prepaid debit or credit card.

Remember that the IRS will never initiate contact using social media, telephone message, or text messages. First contact regarding a tax issue almost always comes via a letter in the mail. You can check the status of your federal tax account at if you have questions about how much you currently owe.

Author - Christian G. MacLeod, CPA

If you have received a tax notice and are unsure how to respond, please contact us at (970) 223-2727 as soon as possible so that we can help you resolve the issue.