DEFINITION of 'IRS Publication 556: Examination Of Returns, Appeal Rights And Claims For Refund'

A document published by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that provides information on the audit process, a taxpayer's right to appeal and how a taxpayer can claim a tax refund. The IRS uses a software to assign a score to both individual and corporate tax returns, with high scores more likely to result in further review. It can also be pulled for review if information in the return does not match other data sources, such as a Form 1099 or a W-2.

If any changes, such as additional taxes due, are proposed by the IRS, the taxpayer can either agree to (and pay) or appeal the decision. If the decision is appealed it can be fast-tracked for resolution.

BREAKING DOWN 'IRS Publication 556: Examination Of Returns, Appeal Rights And Claims For Refund'

The IRS reviews tax returns for a variety of reasons, and may not make any adjustment to the reported tax figure. If the IRS determines that additional taxes should be paid, taxpayers can hire an Enrolled Agent, attorney or other sanctioned person to represent themselves in IRS proceedings.

Additional information on the audit process is available in IRS Publication 1, Your Rights as a Taxpayer.

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