What to do if you get an IRS notice in the mail!

Visiting your mailbox can be fun and exciting – birthday cards, pictures of grandchildren, refund checks, and good coupons.   However, receiving a notice in the mail from the IRS or Iowa Department of Revenue tends to cause immediate stress and sleepless nights.

The following is a general list of steps to take when you receive an IRS or IDOR notice.

  1. Do not ignore the notice.  The longer you wait to respond, the more difficult it is to solve the problem.
  2. Determine who sent the notice; IRS or a state taxing authority.
  3. Determine if the notice is authentic (not a scam).
  4. Read the notice and determine why the IRS/State sent the notice.
  5. Determine what tax year the notice is for.
  6. Review copy of your tax return for the applicable year and compare it to the IRS/State notice.
  7. Do not automatically send any requested payment to the IRS/State without fully understanding the notice.  In some cases, the IRS/State notices are not correct.  Additionally, do not send the requested payment until you determine if the amount you owe can be reduced.
  8. If you are unable to determine what the issue is call the accountant who prepared the tax return, if applicable.
  9. If the notice is correct and you are unable to pay the requested amount determine if other payment methods are available.

If you need assistance in any of these steps, BMP-CPA is here to help!