Taxpayer Rights: Pay No More Than the Correct Amount
As a reminder, taxpayers have the right to pay only the amount of tax legally due, including interest and penalties. They also have the right to have the IRS apply all tax payments properly. This is one of 10 fundamental rights known collectively as the Taxpayer Bill of Rights.
The Taxpayer Bill of Rights (TBOR) is a cornerstone document highlighting the ten fundamental rights taxpayers have when dealing with the Internal Revenue Service. Every taxpayer needs to be aware of these rights in the event they need to work with the IRS on a personal tax matter.
With this in mind, taxpayers should know six important things about their right to pay no more than the correct tax owed. Here is a summary of what taxpayers can expect:
- File for a refund if they believe they overpaid their taxes.
- Contact the IRS by calling the number listed on the notice or bill if they believe there is an error on a notice or bill. Taxpayers may also write to the IRS office that sent the notice or bill within the time frame given and should provide photocopies of any records that may help correct the error.
- File an amended tax return if an error is discovered after the original return was filed. An amended return should also be filed if there is an error or change in your filing status, income, deductions, or credits.
- Request that any amount owed be removed if it exceeds the correct amount due under the law, if the IRS has assessed it after the period allowed by law, or if the assessment was done in error or in violation of the law.
- Request that the IRS remove interest from the account if the agency caused unreasonable errors or delays.
- Submit an offer in compromise using Form 656-L, Offer in Compromise. Taxpayers use this form to ask the IRS to accept less than the full amount of tax debt. Taxpayers do this if they believe all or part of the debt is not owed.
For general information about taxpayer rights, take a look at IRS Publication 1, Your Rights as a Taxpayer, which includes a full list of taxpayers’ rights. If you have specific questions, don’t hesitate to contact the office. Help is just a phone call away.