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Getting Documents From The IRS
Transcript of Getting Documents From The IRS
Return information is what the IRS has obtained with respect to a return.
Disclosure and FOIA
We would all like it if our clients kept copies of their filed tax returns. But many do not.
Tax Return Information
This is Return Information SUBMITTED BY or ON BEHALF OF the taxpayer. Presumably, your client should have it. But a third party could have sent it to the IRS without giving a copy to your client.
Returns of entities
Who is your client?
Examples of Return Information
Returns of another person who is claiming the EIC
Birth certificates your client sent in.
Not just Forms 1040- can get Forms W-2, 1099, 941s, etc.
If client is a corporation, need a principal to sign the POA.
What do you need? Actual copy of the return or just the information listed on the lines or schedules
What if you need it for a deceased taxpayer?
Does FOIA cover returns?
If you just want a copy of the return, DO NOT make a FOIA request. IRS will deny it and send you the Form 4506 to request it.
If a return is part of a larger file, then you may get the return along with the other documents through FOIA.
Tax Return Information
Sec. 6103(b)(2)- Return information is the identity of the taxpayer (name, address), nature, source or amount of income, payments, receipts, deductions, exemptions, credits, assets, liabilities, net worth, tax liability, tax withheld, deficiences, overassessments, or tax payments, whether a return is being audited or will be audited, and any other data received by or obtained by the IRS with respect to a return."
Ways to get Return Information
If you are working with an IRS employee- Examiner, Revenue Office, Taxpayer Advocate, IRS Attorney-ask for what you need from that person. PUT it in writing. NOT A FORMAL FOIA request.
If you are not working with a particular IRS employee or are in a correspondence type audit, do a FOIA request.
Same as with return information. If you are working with an IRS employee, ask him or her. If not, Do a FOIA request.
Information about a person who is using your client's social security number
Whether your client is going to be audited for another year
Information obtained from third parties- banks, financial institutions, employers, etc.
Business journals your accountant submitted.
Copies of utility bills and insurance payments sent in by your client or you