Three Things You Should Never Say To The IRS

by Jeffrey Todd Jones on Apr. 18, 2016

Tax Tax Litigation Tax  Income Tax 

Summary: IRS/Tax Lawyer Jeffrey T. Jones discusses how you must be very careful about what you say to the IRS during a dispute.

 “Everyone hates dealing with the IRS, but it is especially difficult if you owe back taxes,” said Charleston, West Virginia IRS tax resolution attorney Jeffrey T. Jones.  “You have to be very careful what you say to them.  Saying the wrong things could make matters worse,” said Jones, the best-selling author of the book Protect and Defend.


Jones, who also authored the book Dealing with an IRS Problem, states that there are three things you should never say to the IRS:


1.   Never Tell the IRS Anything - Unless They Have Specifically Asked for the Information!

o   You must learn to give the IRS only what they specifically ask for - and NOTHING ELSE.

o   The IRS thrives on taxpayers with big mouths.  Do not fall into the trap of thinking the IRS is trying to help you.  They are not.  Do not become friendly with an IRS employee and offer more information than is absolutely necessary.

o   Also - be aware that you have the right to say nothing and to have IRS debt resolution attorney talk to them on your behalf.  Don’t be afraid to stop talking or providing information to the IRS - at ANY time.


2.   Never Tell the IRS Something That You Know is Not True.

o   Lying to an IRS employee may substantially undermine your case and cause you more difficulties in the future.  If the IRS catches you in a lie during negotiations or after, you may be charged with perjury.

o   The fine print on most of the IRS forms you will be signing says “under the penalties of perjury” so, unless you are absolutely, positively sure about the answer to any question posed by an IRS employee, the most appropriate and accurate response may be “ I don’t know” or “I can’t recall”.


3.   Never Tell the IRS You Knew What You Were Doing!

o   The tax code is overly complex and most IRS employees don’t understand it.  Do not admit to anything you don’t understand, which should include just about any tax question.

o   Somewhere down the road you may want to plead ignorance and beg the IRS for forgiveness to help eliminate some penalties.  You must be sure that your story (whatever it is) is factual and strong.


o   You don’t want to have anything in your IRS file which may contradict the reason you have for your IRS Problem.  If you are planning on asking the IRS to forgive your penalties - they won’t if they feel you haven’t been honest.

“Whether you are discussing tax liens, levies, wage garnishments or just back taxes you owe, saying the wrong thing can get you in hot water.  So, be careful and, if you have questions, call a professional who deals with the IRS,” said Jones.

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