Freedom of Information Act – Guidance & Tips

Your Tax Resolution Specialists for Tax Preparation & IRS Tax Problems

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Our tax resolution specialists in Denver have been helping taxpayers through the complex web of IRS rules for a couple decades now.  Sometimes our advice may be to tackle the IRS head on as the IRS collections are imminent (or in process).  Sometimes it’s best to take a quieter approach and move discreetly until the timing is best for you. By utilizing us for help we are sure to be your freedom of information act (FOIA) guide. We don’t know about your tax problem until we know your personal story and circumstances.  That’s why we offer a free initial consultation!  Once we can factor in your personal desires, goals and circumstances we can advise how to proceed. The FOIA is a tool we employ in some cases to really find out where you are at with the IRS.

What is the Freedom of Information Act?

At times the FOIA can be a great guide if you have a tax problem.  The Freedom of Information Act allows a taxpayer to get any information that the IRS has about them. Oftentimes when a taxpayer hasn’t filed in many years, they do not have all the information necessary to file tax returns, so they are at a loss for how to proceed.  The IRS has copies of all income items (and certain personal deductions, such as mortgage interest) that have been supplied by employers and banks.  They use this information to match what you have included in your tax returns to what outside parties have provided to them.  By using the FOIA as a guide, you will know that the IRS has to provide this information to you if you request it properly.

IRS Is Already Levying You?

You can get valuable information by working with our tax resolution specialists out of Denver. We may choose to get the Information by simply calling the IRS.  This is a cheaper and faster method to get the income information.  Some judgment is needed in determining how to get that necessary information.  For example, if the IRS is already garnishing your wages, you are already in the IRS’s bullseye, so you may as well just call and ask for the information to be able to speedily prepare any outstanding returns and propose a solution to stop the levy as fast as possible.

Are you under the radar?

On the other hand, you may still be under the radar and the IRS hasn’t been contacting you at all.  If you call the IRS, a few things will happen.  They will always ask where you work and where you bank. The IRS will always put you on a deadline when you will have to file returns and it’s generally 14 to 30 days.  If you don’t meet their deadline, they use collection actions (where you work, where you bank) to encourage you to hurry.  If they empty your bank account and take your paycheck, you will hurry.  Use the Freedom of Information Act as a way to know what you are getting into when calling the IRS. Unfortunately, sometimes it takes a lot of time to do a good job of preparing tax returns. For instance, if there is information that is missing due to stock sales and you need to contact a broker to determine the basis, it may take more than 30 days.  Likewise, if you have a business and haven’t filed in 5 years, just preparing an accounting of your business expenses can take months. 30 days may just not be enough time. In cases such as these let us be your guide. A FOIA request may be more appropriate to buy more time to prepare the returns.  You don’t need the pressure of trying to do an adequate job while the IRS is breathing down your back or levying your wages and bank accounts! Reach out to our Denver-based tax resolution specialists for help in solving your problem with the IRS.

Statute of Limitations Timeline 

One of our favorite Freedom of Information Act uses is using time to your advantage and this relates to the Statute of Limitations for collections.  The IRS has 10 years to collect a tax. Certain types of transcripts can be acquired from the IRS via the FOIA that can be used to determine the Statute of Limitations for collections.  If the time period expires, you no longer owe the tax.  Please read the section on the Statute of Limitations on the header above this tab.  In a nutshell the IRS only has a certain amount of time to collect, so special considerations are necessary to ensure your best outcome.

If you call the IRS and ask them for the dates via a phone call, they may give it to you, but they will also start asking questions relating to collections as you have just brought your file to the front of the line for collections.  By law the Disclosure Office of the IRS cannot communicate with any other division to let them know you requested it.  Sometimes if you are not in the collections bullseye, it’s best to stay out of it and request the information through the FOIA and perhaps wait for the statute to expire.

Many ways to fix your IRS tax problem

Every tax situation is different and there are many ways to fix a tax problem.  A free initial consultation with one of our tax resolution specialists is designed to determine which strategies may be best for your individual circumstances.  Call our Denver tax firm today for an appointment and let us help you.  Peace of mind is the biggest benefit most of our clients write about in our client surveys.   Contact Us Today and get your peace of mind back!


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