Who Gets Selected for an Audit?

Most audits are triggered either by computerized screening, random sample, or the income document-matching program. The document-matching program compares the income and amounts reported to IRS are on the return and verifies the amounts match.

There are also circumstances that may cause the IRS to examine your return more closely. For example, the IRS may request more information if your itemized deductions are very high or if you claim excessive small business losses. 

You may also be selected to explain the treatment of an item on your tax return.

Many examinations result in a refund or acceptance of the tax return without change, but some may result in a change in tax liability.

The Examination Process: What Happens When You Get Audited?

The IRS audit notice may either require you to attend a subsequent meeting in person or to send additional information by mail. You may choose to have Jackson Hewitt assist you during your audit. A representative will explain how your tax return was prepared. Jackson Hewitt cannot act as your legal counsel or financial representative.

If the examination results in a change to your tax liability, you may want the IRS to reconsider your case. The IRS may reconsider your case if you are submitting additional information that could result in a change to the additional amount they determined that you owe, you are filing an original delinquent return after they determined that you owe an additional amount, or you have identified a mathematical or processing error they made. You should gather copies of your records, tax returns, and canceled checks, and any other necessary information to support your case. Your reasons for disagreeing cannot be based only on moral, religious, political, constitutional, conscientious, or similar grounds.

If you cannot reach an agreement regarding the proposed changes to your tax return, the IRS may send you Letter 525, General 30-day Letter, notifying you of your rights to appeal, a copy of the tax examiner's report and an agreement or a waiver form. If you do not respond to this letter, or if you still do not reach an agreement with the appeals officer, the IRS will send you a Letter 531, Notice of Deficiency. You have 90 days from the date of this notice to file a petition with the Tax Court. If you do not file this petition, you will receive a bill for the amount due.

Innocent Spouse Relief

If you filed a joint tax return, you are jointly and individually responsible for the tax and any interest or penalty due on the joint return, even if you later divorce. In some cases, a spouse may be relieved of the tax, interest, and penalties on a joint return. You may be eligible for relief no matter how small the liability. Three types of relief are available:

  • Innocent spouse relief – This may apply to all joint filers.

  • Separation of liability – This may apply to joint filers who are divorced, widowed, legally separated, or have not lived together for the past 12 months.

  • Equitable relief – This applies to all joint filers.

Innocent spouse relief and separation of liability apply only to items incorrectly reported on a joint tax return. If a spouse does not qualify for innocent spouse relief or separation of liability, the IRS may grant equitable relief. Each type of relief is different and each has different requirements. You must file Form 8857, Request for Innocent Spouse Relief, to request any of these methods of relief.


An audit can be very stressful. We can help.

Getting audited is never easy, and it can be particularly stressful if you are not properly prepared for it. There are only a handful of people in this world who keep track of their taxes enough to get through an audit with ease. For the rest of us, this process is a thing of nightmares.

With Express Tax Service on your side, you never have to worry about how smoothly your audit will go. We provide IRS tax audit representation and defense to individuals and businesses throughout Houston Texas and across the country.

If you’re a small business owner in need of tax preparation services, turn to Express Tax Service. We’ll take care of the stress for you.

How Tax Audit Defense Works

Express Tax Service will provide you with a complimentary consultation that will deliver a fair and thorough evaluation of your situation. A Senior Tax Consultant will ask in-depth questions that will help us determine the scope of work, ultimately recommending the path forward that’s most likely to result in a successful outcome.

Next, an Enrolled Agent will gather documents such as the return or returns in question, IRS transcripts and your records and receipts. We’ll make sure we fully understand your finances and return before preparing your defense. Because we hire the most experienced and dependable tax professionals available, you can rest assured that we’ll provide the trustworthy representation your case deserves.

Tax Audit Representation And Defense 

Anyone can get audited by the IRS, even with a clean tax history. All it takes is a tiny red flag for the government to seek further information about your finances. Of course, the more red flags you have, the higher your chances are of being audited.

At Express Tax Service, we understand how stressful it is when an unexpected audit notice from the IRS arrives in the mail. If this is the first time you’ve been audited, you probably have questions and feel overwhelmed. Don’t worry — Express Tax service will help you manage your defense from start to finish.

The good news is this: The fact that the IRS sent you an audit notice doesn’t mean you filed your personal income tax return incorrectly. Sometimes, the IRS might flag a return for an audit because the taxpayer started a new business or investment strategy. The IRS makes mistakes too — and we know how to build your defense.

Small Business Tax Preparation Services In Texas And Across The U.S.

Business owners, in particular, are especially susceptible to IRS tax audits. Small business owners often take legitimate deductions for home office expenses, travel, entertainment, computer hardware, computer software and more.

If you’re a small business owner and you received an audit notice, get in touch with Express Tax Service We’ve helped everyone from CEOs to sole proprietors defend their tax returns from an IRS audit.

Client Success Stories

Audit defense is just one aspect of the services we provide for our clients. Explore our success stories, and you’ll find:

  • Individual and small business tax preparation services that will help you avoid future audits

  • Clients who have saved tens of thousands of dollars or had their tax debt eliminated

  • Negotiated tax debt balances through the Offer in Compromise program

  • Negotiated payment plans that are affordable — and that stop collection actions such as liens and garnishment

  • Clients who fell behind with the IRS or their state tax authority but won relief from tax liens

  • State income tax relief regardless of where you’re located in the U.S.

Texas And Nationwide Tax Audit Defense

Express Tax Service is proud to serve clients located across the United States. We’ve helped taxpayers from New York to California — no matter where you live and where you filed your tax return, the professionals at Express Tax Service are prepared to defend you during your federal or state audit.

Regardless of where you filed your taxes, we can review your case and come up with the best way to get you through your audit. We will act as your legal representatives in all matters with the tax auditor and the IRS. If there are any problems with the audit, we will negotiate matters to ensure that you get out of it as quickly as possible. Without taking the right steps, your case could be opened up for even further review.

Contact Express Tax Service For IRS Tax Audit Representation

The worst mistake you can make is to ignore a notice from the IRS or your state tax authority. The best approach is to contact Express Tax Service and let us handle your negotiation. We’ll fully review your personal or business tax return, no matter how complex, and provide you with the path forward that’s most likely to result in a positive outcome.

For more information about Express Tax Service and to learn how we can prepare your audit defense, get in touch with us at (888) 629-8229 or by completing our online contact form.