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This addresses audit notices and related tax issues.

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1) What should a taxpayer (T/P) do when he receives the audit notice?
2) Can the T/P avoid meetings with IRS auditor once he hires a representative?
3) What can the T/P do if no agreement can be reach between him and IRS?
4) What are some common examples of the timing strategy?

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1 - A taxpayer has 30 days to respond to an IRS audit notice. When the T/P receives the audit notice, the T/P should immediately contact their tax professional, if the T/P enlisted the help of a tax professional to prepare the tax return that is in question. If the T/P self-prepares their tax return, the T/P should find a reputable CPA to represent the T/P in any audit processes. This can be easily accomplished by having the T/P sign a power of attorney for the years that are being audited. The T/P should then turn all tax returns in question and related documentation over to the tax professional that the T/P has selected as representation. It is never recommended for a taxpayer to represent himself or herself in an audit unless the taxpayer is a CPA.

2 - The T/P can avoid all meetings with the IRS auditor once he or she hires a representative. If the auditor needs additional ...

Solution Summary

The solution provides answers to each of the following questions:

What should a taxpayer (T/P) do when he receives the audit notice?
Can the T/P avoid meetings with IRS auditor once he hires a representative?
What can the T/P do if no agreement can be reach between him and IRS?
What are some common examples of the timing strategy?

See Also This Related BrainMass Solution

Auditing: preparation of personal financial statements

You are a credentialed CPA just starting your own practice in Hollywood, California, after five years' experience with a "Big 4" firm. You have several connections in the entertainment industry and hope to develop a practice rendering income tax, auditing, and accounting services to celebrities and other wealthy clients.

One of your first engagements is arranged by John Forbes, a long-established business manager for a number of celebrities, and a friend of yours. You have been hired to audit the personal statement of financial condition (balance sheet) of Dallas McBain, one of Forbes's clients. McBain is a popular rock star with a net worth of approximately $100 million. However, the star also has a reputation as an extreme recluse who is never seen in public except at performances.

Forbes handles all of McBain's business affairs, and all your communications with McBain are through Forbes. You have never met McBain personally and have no means of contacting the star directly. All of McBain's business records are maintained at Forbes's office. Forbes also issues checks for many of McBain's personal expenses, using a check-signing machine and a facsimile plate of MacBain's signature.

During the audit, you notice that during the year, numerous checks totaling approximately $500,000 have been issued payable to Cash. In addition, the proceeds of a $250,000 sale of marketable securities were never deposited in any of McBain's bank accounts. In the accounting records, all of these amounts have been charged to the account entitled "Personal Living Expenses." There is no further documentation of these disbursements.

When you bring these items to Forbes's attention, he explains that celebrities such as McBain often spend a lot of cash supporting various "hangers-on," whom they don't want identified by name. He also states, "Off the record, some of these people also have some very expensive habits." He points out, however, that you are auditing only the statement of assets and liabilities, not McBain's revenue or expense. Furthermore, the amount of these transactions is not material in relation to McBain's net worth.

1.Discuss whether the undocumented disbursements and the missing securities proceeds should be of concern to you in a balance sheet-only audit.

2.Identify the various courses of action that you might at least consider under these circumstances. Explain briefly the arguments supporting each course of action.

3.Explain what you would do and justify your decision.

4.Assume that you are a long-established CPA, independently wealthy, and that the McBain account represents less than five percent of the annual revenue of your practice. With this change in circumstances what you would do? Discuss.

5.Consider that you are not independently wealthy. How would this affect what you would do?

6.Finally, what are the issues embedded in this case that influence or alter your understanding of accounting control systems? What does this now suggest about accounting control systems?

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