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How to Avoid an Audit of Your Taxes

How to Avoid an Audit of Your Taxes

John Rossheim | Monster Senior Contributing Writer

Taxes are high enough; you don’t want to also pay penalties and interest because an audit reveals you’ve broken the rules. And Internal Revenue Service audits aren’t a vanishing anomaly; they’re on the upswing.

The IRS “has gotten almost nasty” in its pursuit of tax payments that could help reduce the federal deficit, says Sanford Botkin, a lawyer and CPA. Audit rates increased in 2007, both for overall individual rates and for higher-income taxpayers, reaching a 10-year high, according to IRS statistics.

Now that you’ve been forewarned, forearm yourself with these tips for reducing the chances that the IRS will send you an invitation you can’t refuse.

Choose Your Tax Advisors and Preparer Carefully

A highly qualified tax preparer will help you nip many common audit triggers in the bud. “You want an honest but aggressive accountant,” says Botkin, a former legal specialist with the IRS. That means interviewing preparers to determine if they will pursue all legitimate tax breaks without claiming questionable deductions that could raise red flags.


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