Yes. The Taxpayer Bill of Rights states your rights as a taxpayer and the code of conduct the IRS has to follow when dealing with taxpayers. Some of the most essential rights of a taxpayer are:
- You are entitled to representation by an attorney, accountant, or other tax advisor when dealing with the IRS. If you have sought representation, the IRS cannot interact with you without the presence of that representation.
- You can record a conference with the IRS as long as you have given at least 10 days notice. Be advised, the IRS can also record the conference as long as they give you 10 days notice.
- You can suspend an audit in process to consult with your professional advisor.
Information the IRS Must Include with a Notice of Tax Deficiency
There a certain items the IRS must include in these types of notice to a taxpayer:
- Clear explanation of what the notice is about
- Provide additional information if requested
- Non-technical statement of your rights as a taxpayer
- Explanation of IRS collection and tax appeals procedures
If I Am Penalized by the IRS, Do I Have Any Rights Concerning a Payment Plan?
Yes, if you owe $10,000 or less (not including interest and penalties), you can request an installment plan with the IRS and, as long as certain conditions are met, the IRS is required to agree to as much as a three year installment payment schedule.
What Rights Do I Have If the IRS Threatens to Seize My Property?
If the IRS is threatening to seize your property and you feel it would cause you significant hardship, you have the right to apply for a Taxpayer Assistance Order by filing IRS Tax Form 911 with an IRS Problem Resolution Office in your local district. Tax enforcement measures will be suspended while this is under review.
In addition, there are certain kinds of property that the IRS cannot seize:
- The IRS must leave you with $6,250 in fuel, furniture, and household effects
- The exempt amount for tools, books and other equipment used for your job is $3,125
- If the tax liability is only $5,000 or less, your home is exempt from seizure. Even if it is greater than $5,000, the IRS must get permission from a U.S. District Court to seize your residence
- If the IRS is going to seize your property, it must give you at least 30 days prior notice so that you can contest the seizure. The notice must describe the procedures for seizure, any options you have to avoid the seizure, and how you can get your property back once it is seized by the IRS
Should I Get a Tax Lawyer?
Tax law tends to be extremely complicated. If you are about to be audited or are even past that point and about to have property seized, you should consult an experienced tax attorney who can advise you of your rights and your potential defenses, as well as guide you through the complicated tax system.