DEFINITION of 'Office Audit'

An examination of a taxpayer's records by the Internal Revenue Service to ensure the taxpayer's compliance with tax laws. In an office audit, the IRS interviews the taxpayer and inspects the taxpayer's records at an IRS office. The purpose of an office audit is to make sure the taxpayer is accurately reporting income and paying the lawful amount of tax.

BREAKING DOWN 'Office Audit'

The IRS may select a tax return for audit at random as part of routine compliance efforts; a tax return may also be selected because of suspected errors based on mismatched documents or the examination of related taxpayers' returns. Taxpayers are notified of audits by mail, and the audit itself may be conducted by mail, at an IRS office, at a taxpayer's home or business, or at an accountant's office. IRS Publication 556 provides details on the office audit process.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Field Audit

    An audit is an investigation conducted by the Internal Revenue ...
  2. Correspondence Audit

    Tax audits that the IRS performs by mail. Correspondence audits ...
  3. Appeals Conference

    A conference that a taxpayer can request with the Internal Revenue ...
  4. IRS Publication 556: Examination ...

    A document published by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that ...
  5. Revenue Agent's Report - RAR

    A detailed document describing an IRS examiner's audit findings ...
  6. IRS Publication 1

    A document published by the Internal Revenue Service that identifies ...
Related Articles
  1. Taxes

    What's an Audit?

    An audit is an objective examination of accounting records that makes sure the records are a fair and accurate representation of the transactions they claim to represent.
  2. Taxes

    Surviving The IRS Audit

    Keeping thorough records and knowing the penalties make this experience easier than you'd expect.
  3. Taxes

    How Does An IRS Audit Work?

    It doesn't automatically mean an IRS agent will be ringing your doorbell. Here are the different types of IRS audits and how to handle them.
  4. Taxes

    IRS Asset Seizures: Could It Happen To You?

    If you can't pay your taxes, know that the IRS has many avenues for collecting what you owe.
  5. Taxes

    How To Appeal Your IRS Audit

    The auditor's review isn't always the last word. Many taxpayers who are audited can successfully appeal their audits and save thousands of dollars.
  6. Taxes

    Avoid An Audit: 6 "Red Flags" You Should Know

    Don't make yourself a target - steer clear of these attention-grabbing tax-filing practices.
  7. Financial Advisor

    Advisors: Warn Clients About These Audit Triggers

    There are several factors that may increase the risk of an audit, especially with high-net-worth clients.
  8. Taxes

    Start Over With The IRS

    If you're struggling to pay back taxes, try a fresh start with the IRS. They really can help.
  9. Managing Wealth

    Make $1 Million? Expect an Audit

    If you make $1 million or more, the IRS has its eyes on you. Here's what you can do about it.
  10. Taxes

    How to Avoid the 6 Most Common Tax Audit Triggers

    These are the most common scenarios that can trigger the IRS to audit a tax return.
RELATED FAQS
  1. What is an IRS letter audit / audit by correspondence?

    Learn about IRS letter audits, how tax returns are selected for audits and the common outcomes in the letter audits conducted ... Read Answer >>
  2. Can the IRS audit you after a refund?

    Learn how the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) can conduct a tax audit even after a taxpayer was issued a tax refund in ... Read Answer >>
  3. What should I do to prepare for an IRS audit?

    Find out how to prepare for an IRS audit, what kinds of audits you might face and what kinds of habits you should develop ... Read Answer >>
  4. Are IRS audits random?

    Learn about how the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) conducts its tax audits based on random selection, document matching ... Read Answer >>
  5. What’s the difference between IRS Forms 1040 and 1040EZ?

    Though very similar, the differences between the 1040 and 1040EZ Forms are significant when it comes to filing your tax return. ... Read Answer >>
Hot Definitions
  1. IRS Publication 970

    A document published by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that provides information on tax benefits available to students ...
  2. Federal Direct Loan Program

    A program that provides low-interest loans to postsecondary students and their parents. The William D. Ford Federal Direct ...
  3. Cash Flow

    The net amount of cash and cash-equivalents moving into and out of a business. Positive cash flow indicates that a company's ...
  4. PLUS Loan

    A low-cost student loan offered to parents of students currently enrolled in post-secondary education. With a PLUS Loan, ...
  5. Graduate Record Examination - GRE

    A standardized exam used to measure one's aptitude for abstract thinking in the areas of analytical writing, mathematics ...
  6. Graduate Management Admission Test - GMAT

    A standardized test intended to measure a test taker's aptitude in mathematics and the English language. The GMAT is most ...
Trading Center