What Happens If I Disagree With the Results of My Audit?

What Happens If I Disagree With the Results of My Audit? If you disagree with the results of your audit you have several opportunities to contest the audit the first thing is immediately after the audit you can go to the auditor's manager and plead your case with the auditors manager the problem with this generally is unless the auditor made a mistake the managers generally back their people when it comes to defending audits. The government is going to have their side and you're gonna have your side of the issue and unless the auditor is just flat wrong it was trust me it happens quite a bit but usually the manager is gonna back their people it's just like if you made a mistake on the job you would hope that your boss would back you up even if you made an error so number one you can go to the manager and if there's a mistake it's a good opportunity to correct it.

The managers are usually more senior they also have more negotiating power they've been around a lot longer usually so you might be able to get a deal done to correct it if you can't agree with the manager then you can go through the appeals process there's two ways to go through the appeals process number one you can go through normal channels you get your audit result you don't like it you file an appeal and you go into Appeals the benefit is that this process is a lot faster you usually get into Appeals within a month or two you know given IRS delays and they get busy at certain times holidays and whatnot but you can go into Appeals that way and deal with an appeals officer the other way to get into Appeals is by what we call filing a docket appeal which is you wait for the audit result to finalize you elect not to go into appearance and then they send you what they call a notice of deficiency is saying hey you didn't elect to go into.

Appeals we're going to assess you this based on your audit and then based on that notice of deficiency you can file a tax court petition and go into tax court prior to going into tax court so you're not to litigate you can go into Appeals that way in our experience we find that process to be a little bit more helpful. The reason for that is once you file a tax court petition and enter into Appeals that way district counsel is involved and with district counsel involved district counsel is more apt to settle the case and they can take into consideration the hazards if you were to actually litigate this in tax court which some audits do get litigating in Tax Court so those are all the different ways that you can deal with things if you disagree with your honor eventually you can also do what we call an audit reconsideration so if you find new evidence or if there wasn't something that was properly considered in the audit because you didn't have the opportunity to present it you can ask the IRS to reconsider that's not usually a primary option that's usually a backup if you don't get to go through the formal appeals process but you have that as an option as well so just keep in mind that the auditor isn't the final word on this but when you're going through the audit to the extent you can prepare the audit record for review at the higher levels of meaning knowing that an appeals officer may eventually read this audit you'll be in much better shape you get into Appeals and when you get into some of the higher levels by the way if you do decide to appeal your audit make sure you hire an attorney who has experience dealing with tax court so that you can be prepared and go the distance if you absolutely.


Sam Brotman, JD, LLM, MBA

Owner and Director of Legal
Brotman Law