Friday, June 1, 2007

What Not To Bring To An IRS Audit

I came across this little article in a sample issue of Bottom Line magazine titled, 'What You Should NEVER Bring to an IRS Audit'. The article states that the most common audit mistake is to bring (and provide) to the auditor past years tax returns. Doing so, the article says, expands audit risk because you are giving the auditor more to look at and thus allowing him to see patterns in income and expenses that might exist. People often supply past returns because the audit notice says to.

Apparently there is an IRS rule that states that you are required to provide only the information which pertains to the tax year being audited unless there is an issue with carryover items or the like.

I looked at a couple publications briefly on the IRS webpage (Pub #1 and #556) and I didn't come across anything to support this. I'll have to look into it further because I would like to know for certain if this is the case (not that I'm planning on getting audited, but it is always helpful to know what the playing field is like just in case). If anyone has an immediate answer, please comment.

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