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Navigating the IRS Appeals Process: Protecting Your Rights and Assets 

Facing an IRS dispute or tax-related issue can be daunting, but it’s essential to know that you have the right to appeal IRS decisions. The IRS appeals process serves as a vital avenue for resolving disputes and ensuring taxpayers’ rights are protected. In this article, we’ll explore what can be appealed, the duration of the appeals process, the role of a Collection Due Process (CDP) hearing, the function of an appeals officer, and how professional representation by a tax attorney or enrolled agent can significantly assist in filing and resolving appeals. 

What Can Be Appealed? 

The IRS holds a lot of decision making power but did you know that you have the right to appeal their decision? The IRS appeals process allows taxpayers to challenge a wide range of decisions, including: 

  • Tax deficiencies: If you believe the IRS made an error in assessing your tax liability or disallowed deductions or credits, you can appeal this decision and prove that the IRS is incorrect. 
  • Audit findings: If you disagree with the results of an IRS audit, you have the right to appeal. At times, the IRS Audit Agent may make decisions that you don’t agree with, you can appeal this decision and request to speak with their manager for another opportunity to present your case. 
  • Collection actions: Appeals can be filed to challenge levies, liens, wage garnishments, or denials of installment agreements. 
  • Penalties: Disagreements regarding IRS-imposed penalties, such as late filing or late payment penalties, can be appealed providing you with an opportunity to remove the penalties the IRS has assessed. 

How Long Does the Appeals Process Take? 

The duration of the appeals process can vary significantly depending on the complexity of the case and the type of appeal. When filing appeals in regards to liens or levies, resolution can occur within months. In other cases such as filing appeals for audits, these can be more complex and take a year or longer to resolve. It’s essential to be patient and work closely with a tax professional during this process. Talk with one of our team members today to see how long your unique appeal process may take.   

Collection Due Process (CDP) Hearing: 

A crucial component of the appeals process, especially for collection-related issues, is the Collection Due Process (CDP) hearing. This hearing provides taxpayers with an opportunity to present their case to an impartial IRS appeals officer. Key aspects of a CDP hearing include: 

  • Requesting a CDP hearing: Taxpayers must request a CDP hearing within 30 days of receiving an IRS notice of intent to take collection actions, such as a levy or lien. It’s important that Form 12153 is submitted timely to ensure a Collections Due Process Hearing get scheduled. 
  • Presenting your case: At the CDP hearing, taxpayers, or their representatives, can provide evidence and arguments to support their position. It’s essential to come prepared with documentation and a clear, compelling case. Oftentimes Appeals Officers will request documentation to be provided well in advance of the CDP hearing. 
  • Appeals officer’s role: An appeals officer is an impartial mediator tasked with reviewing the facts and evidence presented by both the taxpayer and the IRS. They make a determination based on the merits of the case. 
  • Appeals officer’s decision: After reviewing the case, the appeals officer will issue a written determination outlining their decision which is referred to as a “Notice of Determination”. If the decision is favorable to the taxpayer, it can lead to the withdrawal of collection actions or a resolution to the tax dispute. 


Role of Professional Representation: 

Having professional representation, such as a tax attorney or enrolled agent, during the appeals process can be a game-changer: 

  • Expertise: Tax professionals understand the intricacies of tax law and the appeals process. They can accurately assess your situation, identify potential arguments, and provide expert guidance. 
  • Negotiation Skills: Tax attorneys and enrolled agents are skilled negotiators. They can advocate for your interests during the appeals process, increasing the likelihood of a favorable outcome. 
  • Documentation: Tax professionals can help gather and organize the necessary documentation and evidence to support your appeal, ensuring that your arguments are well-supported. 
  • Compliance Management: They can assist you in complying with any modified payment arrangements or other requirements that may result from the appeals process. 

In conclusion, the IRS appeals process is a valuable tool for taxpayers to challenge IRS decisions and protect their rights. It covers a wide range of issues, from tax deficiencies to collection actions and penalties. While the duration of the process can vary, the use of a Collection Due Process (CDP) hearing is often a critical step. Appeals officers play a pivotal role in reviewing cases and issuing determinations. 

Professional representation by a tax attorney or enrolled agent is highly recommended during the appeals process. These experts bring expertise, negotiation skills, and the ability to present compelling arguments, significantly increasing your chances of a successful appeal. Don’t navigate the IRS appeals process alone; seek professional guidance to protect your assets and ensure a fair resolution to your tax dispute. 

Why Choose Hood Tax Resolution? 

When it comes to resolving tax problems, choosing the right partner can make all the difference. Hood Tax Resolution stands out as the ideal choice because of our seasoned team of tax attorneys and enrolled agents, with decades of invaluable experience. Our team possesses an in-depth understanding of tax laws, regulations, and IRS procedures, enabling us to craft strategic, personalized solutions for every client. We’re not just about resolving tax issues; we’re committed to protecting our clients’ financial well-being and ensuring a brighter financial future. With Hood Tax Resolution, you’re not just hiring a team; you’re securing peace of mind and a clear path toward tax resolution. We have helped thousands of clients across the nation and are ready to help you put your tax problems in the rear-view mirror. 

Did the IRS make a decision that you don’t agree with? Contact our team today for your free initial consulation to see what options you may have for appeal. 

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