Appeal Rights

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Are you in the middle of a disagreement with the Internal Revenue Service?

One of the guaranteed rights for all taxpayers is the right to appeal, according to the Internal Revenue Service.  If you disagree with the Internal Revenue Service about the amount of your tax liability or about proposed collection actions, you have the right to ask the Internal Revenue Service Appeals Office to review your case.

Internal Revenue Service Publication 1, "Your Rights as a Taxpayer," explains some of your most important taxpayer rights.  During their contact with taxpayers, Internal Revenue Service employees are required to explain and protect these taxpayer rights, including the right to appeal.

The Internal Revenue Service appeals system is for people who do not agree with the results of an examination of their tax returns or other adjustments to their tax liability.  In addition to examinations, you can appeal many other things, including:

  •  Collection actions such as liens, levies, seizures, installment agreement terminations, and rejected offers-in-compromise

  •  Penalties and interest

  •  Employment tax adjustments and the trust fund recovery penalty

Appeals conferences are informal meetings.  The local Appeals Office, which is independent of the Internal Revenue Service office that proposed the disputed action, can sometimes resolve an appeal by telephone or through correspondence.

You may represent yourself, or you can be represented by an attorney, certified public accountant, or individual enrolled to practice before the Internal Revenue Service.  If you represent yourself, you can obtain assistance from specially trained Customer Service Representatives by calling toll-free 1-877-457-5055.

If you and the Internal Revenue Service Appeals Officer cannot reach agreement, or if you prefer not to appeal within the Internal Revenue Service, you may take your disagreement to federal court.  But taxpayers can settle most differences without expensive and time-consuming court trials.

Further information on the appeals process is available in Internal Revenue Service Publication 5, "Your Appeal Rights and How to Prepare a Protest If You Don't Agree," Publication 556, "Examination of Returns, Appeal Rights and Claims for Refunds," and Publication 1660, "Collection Appeal Rights (for Liens, Levies, and Seizures)."  To get copies of Internal Revenue Service publications, visit the Internal Revenue Service Web site at www.Internal Revenue or a local Internal Revenue Service office, or call toll-free 1-800-TAX-FORM (1-800-829-3676).


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