Dealing with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is something that no adult enjoys. Each year adults who have earned taxable income must file a tax return that accounts for the money withheld from their income throughout the year and proves what tax credits they are eligible to receive. Additionally, a person who owns a business of any size must provide detailed information about inventory, cash earned, losses reported, and more. If you find yourself in a position to need assistance from the IRS at any point before or after you file taxes, getting an honest answer to a question is not always easy. Being aware of nine lies the IRS likes to tell taxpayers will help you to prepare for your conversation with an IRS employee.

Explanation Will Come in the Mail

One of the most common things the IRS will tell taxpayers who contact them is that explanations for tax refund delays will come in the mail. While generally, the IRS does limit correspondence to letters sent through the United States Postal Service, there are times when the agency fails to send a notice. It is not unheard of for a person to wait weeks for a notification that never arrives, holding up a tax refund or causing additional penalties for failing to pay taxes owed on time.

Direct Deposit Dates are Firm

After a taxpayer has filed taxes that are received and approved by the IRS, he or she will receive a direct deposit date. The direct deposit dates are usually accurate, but they are not 100% firm.  A person using an account that releases direct deposit funds early may receive the deposit two days before the scheduled date or, if the person has an offset, the direct deposit information may update to information about the debt that was owed.

Calling Slows Down the Process

The IRS will often tell people calling to ask questions about their filed taxes that calling the IRS excessively may cause a delay in the review process. This is a lie the IRS tells often to discourage taxpayers from calling, especially during the busy tax season that occurs between February and April.

Going to Your Local IRS Office Helps

A busy IRS agent may encourage you to visit your local IRS office to verify your identification, provide them with additional information, etc. While going to speak to someone in person may sooth your nerves, there are times when visiting the IRS will only cause additional stress. Your local IRS may be unable to do anything different than the agent you called.

Employees Cannot View Your Taxes

During tax season, IRS employees will often claim they are unable to look at your account until 21 days after you have filed. In reality, most agents can look up your basic information, but they are discouraged from doing this because spending a long time on the phone with a specific person increases overall wait times.

Tax Transcripts Mean Nothing

A tax transcript is a document that contains all of the information that was included on your tax return. The documents are often used by individuals trying to obtain loans since they verify income. Tax transcripts also indicate what day of the week your tax information will update on the Where’s My Refund webpage on the IRS website and what day of the week you should receive a direct deposit.

Obtaining Information Online is Impossible

Periodically, the IRS will change what information taxpayers can obtain from its website.  Though various IRS online services can be discontinued at any time, it is possible to obtain a tax transcript, view your direct deposit date, or verify your identity online. Each year taxpayers should check the IRS website to see what services are available for that tax season.

Any Changes to a Tax Return Cause an Audit

Life changes such as marriage, childbirth, or the death of a spouse can all lead to substantial changes in your tax filing status. While it is not unusual for a person who moved, changed his or her name, or closed a business to have a tax return reviewed, a review does not always turn into an audit and at times a review may not be performed at all.

Talking to an Attorney

Dealing with the IRS is stressful regardless of your income or the success of your business.  Contacting an attorney who can help answer your tax-related questions can give you the peace of mind you need. MMZ LAW is here to help you with all of it or refer you to the appropriate source. Contact our conveniently located Claremont office today to schedule a consultation.



341 W. 1st St. Suite 100
Claremont, CA 91711

MARIVEL M. ZIALCITA is the founder of MMZ LAW, A Professional Corporation, where she practices in the areas of trust & estate, elder law, special needs, conservatorship, trust administration, and probate. Ms. Zialcita is a frequent speaker on trust and estate matters and holds memberships in the State Bar of California, Trust and Estate Section, The San Bernardino County Bar Association, Wealth Counsel and Elder Counsel. She currently assists in the pro bono legal services program at the James L. Brulte Senior Center in Rancho Cucamonga, California. She is based in Claremont but assists clients throughout Southern California.

This information is educational information only and not legal advice.