Tax Audits

Reliable representation to limit your exposure to additional tax assessments

The number of federal tax returns that get audited annually is statistically insignificant — until it happens to you! Then it's an agonizing exercise in prolonged mental torture. The Law Offices of Alan F. Segal & Associates appreciates the stress and anxiety that accompanies an IRS audit. We draw upon 45 years of experience representing audited businesses and individual taxpayers in and around Chicago, Illinois. We give you the legal guidance and emotional support necessary to withstand the rigors of this impersonal and adversarial process. We do everything possible to resolve your tax conflicts as painlessly, expeditiously and economically as possible, as we protect your rights and finances. Our efficient, problem-solving methods have led to consistently positive results for a multitude of clients.

The IRS examination process for business and individual income taxes

If the IRS flags you for a failure to file or one or more questionable entries on your individual or business income tax return, the Service can initiate a formal review of your federal taxes, known as an audit. The IRS performs three types of audits:

  • Correspondence audit — Documents review conducted through the US mail with an IRS Service Center.
  • Office audit — Taxpayer goes to the IRS office for an in-person interview and documents review.
  • Field audit — An IRS revenue agent conducts an interview and documents review on location at the taxpayers' home, office, or in the CPA's or attorney's office.

Proving expenses and verifying deductions on federal tax returns

Among taxpaying sectors, small businesses and self-employed individuals are most likely to be scrutinized by an IRS audit. The IRS provides you with written notice citing the specific documents their agent wants to review. A standard IRS audit can examine your tax records for the previous three years. But if the auditor suspects you have underreported income by 25 percent or more, he or she can dig back five years. If the investigation reveals a reasonable suspicion of fraud, the audit can go back indefinitely. Though your right to appeal the depth of an IRS probe is limited, Segal & Associates does everything possible to limit the audit and forces the auditor to present firm evidence to justify any expansion.

Commonly examined documents during a tax audit are:

  • Automobile and truck expenses
  • Airline ticket receipts
  • Bank statements
  • Cancelled checks
  • Credit card statements
  • Cost of goods sold
  • Frequently examined documents
  • Mileage logs
  • Receipts
  • Repairs
  • Travel itineraries
The IRS can even subpoena records from your lending institution, so it's important that your documentation corresponds with those records.

IRS audit determination

An IRS audit concludes with one of three determinations:

  • No change — The examination is completed resulting in no recommendations for changes.
  • Agreed — The IRS finds a basis for changing the amount of tax that should have been assessed and the taxpayer agrees with the IRS's proposed changes.
  • Disagreed — The IRS finds a basis for changing the amount of tax that should have been assessed and the taxpayer disagrees with the IRS's proposed changes.
If you disagree with the audit determinations, you have the right to appeal. The Law Offices of Alan F. Segal & Associates have decades of experience, producing favorable results for clients in appeals of IRS audit findings.

The Law Offices of Alan F. Segal & Associates guides you through the audit process by gathering documents, offering explanations during the interview and, if necessary, filing an appeal.
To schedule a confidential appointment with our knowledgeable attorneys, call us at: 312-444-1700