The IRS received around 165 million returns in 2022, with only 0.4% facing audits. Common mistakes triggering audits include incomplete returns, math errors, and inaccurate reporting for self-employed individuals.
Claiming excessive business expenses or losses and outsized charitable deductions can also attract attention. The paramount concern is undeclared income, where the IRS cross-references reported earnings with W-2s, 1099s, and other financial records.
Taxpayers are advised to file complete and accurate returns, keeping meticulous records to justify deductions. As tax season unfolds, vigilance and adherence to tax laws can help individuals steer clear of the audit radar.
Tax Season 2024: Navigating Audits and IRS Scrutiny
Tax season 2024 is underway and the IRS is boosting efforts to audit high-income individuals. Learn about common mistakes that could trigger an audit and how to navigate tax season with caution.
1: Incomplete Returns and Mismatched Documentation Incomplete returns, especially with mismatched documentation, often result in IRS scrutiny. Meticulous attention to detail and avoiding rushed filings can mitigate this risk.
2: Math Errors and Reporting Accuracy Simple math errors or inaccuracies in reporting information can lead to extra scrutiny and delays in return processing. E-filing and professional tax preparation help minimize these issues.
3: Self-Employed Challenges Self-employed individuals need to accurately report deductions, especially for home-office expenses and transportation. Diligence in justifying deductions with proper documentation is crucial.
4: Business Expenses and Losses Excessive business expenses or consistent business losses may trigger closer inspection. Claiming legitimate deductions with meticulous justification can help navigate this challenge.
5: Oversized Charitable Deductions Charitable deductions that seem disproportionate to income can attract attention. Staying within IRS limits and providing proper documentation for deductions is essential.
6: Undeclared Income Undeclared income, whether from employment or other sources, is a significant audit risk. Cross-referencing with employer submissions and other financial records is a standard IRS practice.
As taxpayers embark on tax season 2024, adherence to tax laws, accurate reporting, and proper documentation remain key strategies to avoid IRS audits and navigate the complexities of filing returns.