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Old 11-05-2019, 07:04 PM   #41
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My informed delivery (USPS mail) said I had a postmark on an obscured envelope from the treasury dept (yes I can read the postage). Problem is that day my mail was 'sidetracked.' Pension stub showed up, 3 envelopes still missing. 1 from Dept of Treasury, 1 junk mail, 1 bulk mail. Now what? Screenshot_20191105-170350_Chrome.jpeg
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Old 11-05-2019, 07:57 PM   #42
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how long ago is it from? Often things will show up the next day. Had that happen just this weekend, with, of all things, both mine and DH's replacement social security cards! Were in my scanned list for Saturday, and then not here till Monday...

If it's more than two days, there's a place in the email to report an item as not received. I would also stop my carrier and ask her.
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Old 11-05-2019, 08:10 PM   #43
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I market it missing last Friday. I'm hoping the post office can tell me which department uses G4 to send mail. I have no idea if its SSA, IRS, OPM, or VA. I'm only expecting a check from 1 of them. The only other one that sends me a check is on direct deposit BUT it could've been mom's. She always wanted a physical check. I'm hoping it isn't IRS looking for info (blow up looks like a ck?)
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Old 11-05-2019, 08:30 PM   #44
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Wow, must be something about 2017. We got hit, as did friends of ours. Ours was a roller coaster ride....


Back around early June I think, we got an IRS letter saying our 2017 return had been reviewed and that we owed $21k+ !! I looked over the alleged "issues" and to my surprise, there were 8-10 listed, and some looked like errors on our part. My DW has always done our taxes and used Turbo Tax, but she tends to just believe that the software will ask for what it needs and everything else will be fine. I had dumped a lot of stock that year in anticipation of maybe buying a second home, but as I always do, I carefully calculated the tax load on the gains.


But somehow that, among other things, got missed.


So we got a reference for a tax accountant office and they said for $300 they would review everything an try to reduce our burden. They asked for other docs, statements, then came back and said that they think we around $15. The IRS had no basis for some stock sells, so assumed $0 basis. The firm wrote us a nice cover letter, and told us to write a check for the $15k and send it and hope for the best.


Months went by, then a shock. A letter from the IRS came in and said that they thought that they OWED us $5100. We were thrilled. But I let the letter sit on the dining room table for weeks and when I finally went to sign it and send it in, I saw that we had missed the "return by" date by 2 weeks. So we signed it and wrote a nice note that my wife had been traveling nonstop for work and did not have the opportunity to sign it in time (mostly true), sent it in and hoped for the best.

Another month or so goes by and in comes a letter from the IRS, I open it and it says that they think they owe us $4300 and a check will be mailed in 2-3 weeks. At that point I ponder just taking it a walking away. But after staring at all the math on the forms (and like a fool, I had not made a copy of the last one before I signed it and sent it in, so I couldn't compare it) I saw something that said the 2017 return was late by 2 months and a penalty of $791 was assessed for that. I check with DW, and she agreed, we have NEVER been late filing. So I saw a 1-800 to call, thought the odds were VERY slim, but decided to give it a call.


Much to my surprise, in about 5 minutes, I had an IRS rep on the phone who spoke perfect English, was very professional and polite and knew her stuff. After putting me on hold a couple times to research things for just a few mins, she came back and said that the only difference in the last two was the late penalty of $791. I told her that I Was certain that we were not late, and could go find out signed an dated return for that year if needed. She said that the system she used had a function to see if the penalty could be waived, and she would try it. Then she said "Yep! It says you have a good record of compliance" and the penalty would be removed. In 4-6 weeks a check for $5100 would be sent (nad our trip to Ireland next year is now funded).

I was pretty amazed at my experience with the IRS anyway. Lessons learned....
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Old 11-05-2019, 08:39 PM   #45
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I agree that you need representation to go to the IRS, for no other reason than to eliminate that awful dreadful feeling you get when thinking about it. Good luck!
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Old 11-05-2019, 08:49 PM   #46
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In all seriousness, this scam is making a lot of money, even though they have the incredible issue of 99.2% of the calls not being understandable. The word is that the call is about a problem with immigration status. It hits a nerve on a lot of victims and is very successful.

From a Web site:

Quote:
In a public service announcement released Thursday, the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center reports that victims have reported receiving phone calls and text messages from people speaking in a Chinese-dialect claiming to be from the Chinese embassy, consulate or a shipping company.

The scammers often tell victims they have a package waiting for them at the embassy, and that they are under investigation by Chinese law enforcement. From there, the victim is transferred to an “investigator,” who tells the victim they need to send money to China or Hong Kong to resolve the situation. Other versions of the scam involves callers posing as representatives from Chinese credit card companies and demanding payment on an outstanding balance, otherwise they say the police will be called.

Another poster has reported receiving phone scams in Chinese, same as I did, and we are not Chinese. It appears that scammers are making indiscriminate robot calls to blocks of numbers, hoping to hit a potential victim.
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Old 11-05-2019, 09:40 PM   #47
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Much to my surprise, in about 5 minutes, I had an IRS rep on the phone who spoke perfect English, was very professional and polite and knew her stuff. After putting me on hold a couple times to research things for just a few mins, she came back and said that the only difference in the last two was the late penalty of $791. I told her that I Was certain that we were not late, and could go find out signed an dated return for that year if needed. She said that the system she used had a function to see if the penalty could be waived, and she would try it. Then she said "Yep! It says you have a good record of compliance" and the penalty would be removed. In 4-6 weeks a check for $5100 would be sent (nad our trip to Ireland next year is now funded).

I was pretty amazed at my experience with the IRS anyway. Lessons learned....
The IRS (really the whole U.S. Gov't) doesn't outsource much, if any, work to foreign companies. It's a bad look for them to be spending taxpayer money to provide jobs overseas, not to mention the security issues. So when you call, you're always speaking to a fellow American and odds are it'll be one who has English as her native language.

Did you send in the check for $15K in June, and it turned out you really only owed $10K, hence the $5K refund? If so, that $791 penalty was legit and it was lucky they were able to waive it. You were late in paying the $10K if it wasn't en route to the IRS' by April 15. Penalties are based on the date when you pay, not when you file the paperwork.
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Old 11-05-2019, 09:43 PM   #48
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The IRS (really the whole U.S. Gov't) doesn't outsource much, if any, work to foreign companies. It's a bad look for them to be spending taxpayer money to provide jobs overseas, not to mention the security issues. So when you call, you're always speaking to a fellow American and odds are it'll be one who has English as her native language...

I was joking earlier about Chinese scammers.
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Old 11-05-2019, 10:05 PM   #49
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I was joking earlier about Chinese scammers.
Oh I got that! I was just responsing to doneat54's mention of getting a rep who spoke perfect English.
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Old 11-05-2019, 10:43 PM   #50
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Good luck leinlord. We were audited several years ago. We were tempted to just pay the fine/amount owed, as it wasn't a huge dollar amount, but our tax preparer recommended we fight it. She said if we paid, it would be an admission of wrongdoing and we would be targets in the future, but if we fought and were cleared, it was unlikely we would be audited again. It was a huge pain, but ultimately they determined we owed zero. Given the time and effort required, just paying the fine would have definitely been the easier path.
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Old 11-05-2019, 11:34 PM   #51
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One of my former neighbors was an IRS Regional Manager, & he had some simple advice: Be NICE!

The IRS agents are just doing their job, & have nothing personal against you, unless you give them a reason! That reason may be your return...or your attitude. So, smile a lot.
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Old 11-06-2019, 05:54 AM   #52
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Repairs prior to renting get added to the basis, not expenses. That is what they want to know. The dates of the receipts vs. The rental dates.



There is a $25,000 loss limit against your income.


+1. I think the OP might have goofed on their return.
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Old 11-06-2019, 06:02 AM   #53
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Wow, must be something about 2017. We got hit, as did friends of ours. Ours was a roller coaster ride....
Its 2017 audit season. Fortunately, it is about to come to a close.

The general pattern of audits is that they start the summer of the next year.

So for year 2017:
- File 2017 in April 2018.
- IRS focuses on immediate refunds in spring 2018.
- IRS computers kick out "dumb mistakes," i.e. pure math errors in early summer 2018 for 2017 returns. I once got a surprise refund because I miscalculated my estimated payments. Nice surprise, and quick! I think by law they have to especially find the refund errors else interest may be paid to the citizen?
- Summer through fall computers and people are working on the harder problems from previous years (and absorbing late or extended filings)
- Winter 2019 starts season of ingesting 2018 returns
- Summer and fall of 2019 is 2017's turn for the deeper problems

At least that's what I can ascertain from the letters me and my friends and family have received.

It doesn't mean you are safe for 2017 starting next year. It is just more unlikely.

This pattern even applied 35 years ago. Back then, the IRS was first getting banks to assign interest in each account to a social security number. I had an account at a bank that my parents banked at. I had about $200 in that account. My parents had about $200,000, all their life savings. Interest rates were pretty high back then.

Turns out some bank employee assigned all accounts named "Joe W." to my SS#. Dad and I are both Joes. I get all of Dad's interest.

Oh, that was a lot of fun to unwind. Fortunately, the IRS was really good about it once they got a medellion stamped letter from the bank VP. Before that, it was just: "here's your bill..."

And of course, since the bill come 18 months after tax is originally due, the interest on the bill alone gave me a heart attack.

P.S. After this, I'm sure they looked at Dad's form. He reported all that interest and paid. He never got a letter.
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Old 11-06-2019, 06:05 AM   #54
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I've always dreaded the potential of an audit, but never had one. My worst fears were surrounding years when I had complicated returns. The worst was when I did a lot of options. Even the automated software that was supposed to sort all that out created amess of forms. I compensated by leaving out some potential deductions just in case an audit may prove I had missed something that would cost me.

Now my returns are much simpler. No mortgage or medical expenses = standard deduction. Easy peasy.
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Old 11-06-2019, 07:20 AM   #55
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The IRS had no basis for some stock sells, so assumed $0 basis.
I had this issue once- didn't include the basis for multiple money-fund redemptions. Frequently the scary amount owed can be reduced to zero or near zero with some additional information.

Another time I'd done a tax-free rollover of a 401(k) after I left my last employer. The form they supplied correctly coded it that way but the "taxable amount" box was left blank, so I dutifully entered it into TurboTax that way. The IRS computer decided the entire amount was taxable. Easily corrected with a polite letter.

Now I try to see what the alleged issue is before I panic.
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Old 11-06-2019, 09:47 AM   #56
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The OP can deduct more than $25,000 in rental losses if OP is deemed a real estate professional which OP might be given 15 properties.
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Old 11-06-2019, 11:15 AM   #57
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One of my former neighbors was an IRS Regional Manager, & he had some simple advice: Be NICE!

The IRS agents are just doing their job, & have nothing personal against you, unless you give them a reason! That reason may be your return...or your attitude. So, smile a lot.
I think this is so true. The woman who did our audit loved my DH by the time they were done. She told him he reminded her of her son.

It's a fine line to walk between giving only as much as they ask for and not being too overly helpful and being nice, but I agree it's beneficial.
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Old 11-06-2019, 11:16 AM   #58
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Received a letter from the CA Franchise Board. They didn't like aspects of my 2014 taxes. I had adjusted medical deductions and business expenses on the CA form that I didn't "need" to on the Fed form. Apparently that wasn't allowed. It was about $1000. I would have had to amend my 2014 Fed Taxes and potentially have those Red Flagged so I just paid it.



Good luck with your case.


cd :O)
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Old 11-09-2019, 08:57 AM   #59
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A letter from the IRS came in and said that they thought that they OWED us $5100.
Proof that filing Income Tax returns is a scam to support an industry that does not need to exist. The IRS knows exactly how much you owe or are owed, and could easily send you a bill or a check every year. There is no need for everyone to spend hours of time doing meaningless paperwork and stressing over dumb mistakes.
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Old 11-09-2019, 09:19 AM   #60
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The IRS knows exactly how much you owe or are owed, and could easily send you a bill or a check every year.
That may be true for the most basic of situations, but not all. Certain investments and their related activity throughout the year can complicate things. There are some areas on 1099s from brokerages that say (paraphrasing) that "This info has not been provided to the IRS, but may be useful in filing your tax returns." Some of the needed info is contained in those sections.
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