I received a bill as a result of an audit

I received a bill as a result of an audit. The audit occurred by mail. IRS asked me for documentation and by the time I responded I received an assessment. What do I do?

You were caught up in what is called a correspondence audit. Under this program information that the IRS receives is matched to information that should be on your tax return. If there is no match an inquiry is sent out to the taxpayer identifying the non-matches. You have 30 days to respond. When your answer does not occur timely, an assessment may follow.

First, you need to identify the item or items that IRS that do not match your return.  See if your reporting is correct, or if the IRS notice is correct.  If the IRS is correct, you can consent to their adjustments.

If your reporting is correct then continue to contest the IRS information.

Here, the proposed assessment occurred before you responded. I would write again, indicating that your prior letter was not responded to.  Include the prior letter and indicate in the latter that you do not owe the taxes and the reason or reasons for the information not being reported on your return.

If the IRS does not act on your letter, there will be an assessment that will be forthcoming.  File an IRS appeal request for an assessment is other than a Notice of Determination (“NOD”). For a NOD, file a petition in the United States Tax Court. There is a strict 90 days period to appeal the NOD to the Tax Court.

Ultimately, the IRS has a number of appeal points in the process of determining taxes and collecting them. Your job is to find where you are and merely get your response or appeal in.