Lavestia Gaston-Harper Tax Advice

By Lavestia Gaston

Every taxpayer has a set of fundamental rights! This article begins a series of the 10 Taxpayer Bill pf Rights that every taxpayer should know when dealing with the IRS. The IRS expects employees to understand and apply taxpayer rights throughout every encounter with taxpayers.

The Right to Be Informed

Taxpayers have the right to know what they need to do to comply with the tax laws. They are entitled to clear explanations of the laws and IRS procedures in all tax forms, instructions, publications, notices, and correspondence. They have the right to be informed of IRS decisions about their tax accounts and to receive clear explanations of the outcomes.

What you can expect:

· Certain notices must include the amount (if any) of the tax, interest, and certain penalties you owe. It must explain why you owe these amounts.

· When the IRS fully or partially disallows your claim for a refund, it must explain the specific reasons why. · Help with Understanding Your IRS Notice or Letter is available online at

· If the IRS proposes to assess tax against you, it must explain the process – from examination (audit) through collection – in its first letter. This letter should explain your options for a review by an independent Office of Appeals and how the Taxpayer Advocate Service may be able to help you.

· If you enter a payment plan, known as an installment agreement, the IRS must send you an annual statement. This gives you a record of balances and payments. · You can access current and prior year IRS forms and publications at You can also request order them by calling 800-829-3676.

· IRS also uses several social media tools that provide helpful tax information to a broad audience. You can find IRS on Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn and the IRS2Go free mobile app.

Staying informed gives, you the proper procedures on how to communicate with the IRS representatives you encounter and to research information you have questions about. This helps alleviate misunderstandings.