I Received a Letter From the IRS, Now What?!

The IRS will send millions of correspondence for different reasons. We wanted to share some information we received about what you should do when you receive a letter from the IRS.

Here’s what to do:
  1. Don’t Panic! Responding will take care of any issues.
  1. Read Carefully:  There can be many reasons for receiving a letter from the IRS. Most deal with tax returns or accounts. The letter will provide specific instructions and details about what to do so it is important to read the letter carefully and more than once.
  1. Is the letter asking for something? It might be about changes to your account, taxes owed, or a payment request. Sometimes, they may ask for more information on the issue discussed.
  1. Is it about changes to a return? If the letter indicates a change or correction to your tax return, review the changes and compare it with your original return (You should always have your own copy).
  1. Is a reply necessary? There is no need for a reply unless instructed, or if you need to make a payment.
  1. Don’t agree with your notice? Respond! There is a contact stub at the bottom of each letter so you may respond and explain why you disagree. Be sure to include any supporting documents for the IRS and allow up to 30 days for a response. Always send this type of correspondence certified and keep copies of everything you send.
  1. No appointments necessary: If you need to call, use the phone number that is on the upper right hand corner of the notice. Have your tax return and notice in hand for reference.
  1. Keep Records! Always keep copies of any notices that you receive along with your tax records.
  1. Be aware of scams: The IRS will never send you an e-mail or contact your through social media and ask for financial information. They will never demand a specific form of payment such as a prepaid card. For information on payment options, click here.

For more information on the IRS Collection Process, see Publication 594, or to make a payment, visit IRS.gov/payments.

Business Resource Partners has been happy to serve you this tax season and we look forward to 2017! We have our Enrolled Agent on staff who will directly represent you to the IRS and assist in tax planning for you and your business. We offer more than just bookkeeping and taxes for your business! For a complete list of our services, please visit our Services page.
Our sister company, Almond Street Business Center offers a variety of services for your company as well. You may also click any of the links below for more information.

What to be aware of when choosing a Tax Preparer:

With tax season already upon us, it is important to know who is preparing your taxes and what their qualifications are. They are responsible for your information and it is important to be conscious of the potential threats presented this time of year.

 

So, what are some things to consider?

 

  1. Qualifications: There are different qualifications depending on your needs. These include

Attorneys, Certified Public Accountants (CPAs), Enrolled Agents, Annual Filing Season Program Participants, Enrolled Retirement Plan Agents, and Enrolled Actuaries.

For more information on this, visit this page which breaks down each qualification and can help you better determine your needs this year.

 

  1. Check the History: Check the preparer’s license status as well as any disciplinary actions. For CPAs, check the State Board of Accountancy. For Attorneys, check the State Bar Association. For Enrolled Agents, you can go to IRS.gov or email epp@irs.gov with the first and last name of the agent, a complete address if it is available, and the Enrolled Agent Number is available. It is recommended to include as much information as possible. For more information on this, visit the verification page.

 

  1. Ask about Service Fees: Avoid preparers who base their price on the percentage of your return or claim they can get you a bigger refund than the competition. Do not give them any tax documents or anything that would include your social security number.

 

  1. Ask for E-filing: Make sure your preparer offers IRS e-file. The IRS has processed billions of e-files successfully and there is no reason why this should be impossible.

 

  1. Make Sure the Preparer is Available to You: You might need to contact your preparer after the April 18th due date. Don’t hire someone who is constantly on the move and will be difficult to get in touch with.

 

  1. Provide Records & Receipts: A good preparer will want to have all the necessary information in order to properly file your tax return such as total income, tax deductions, credits, etc. For example, do not rely on someone who only wants your last pay stub instead of a From W-2. This is again IRS e-filing rules.

 

  1. Never Sign a Blank Return: This may sound like a no brainer, but it is worth mentioning. Do not use a preparer who asks you to sign a blank return.

 

  1. Review Before Signing: If something is not making sense, ASK. You should feel completely informed and comfortable with any document you are signing. Always double check the bank Account and Routing number to make sure that it is yours. Always keep copies of everything.

 

  1. Make Sure Your Preparer signs and includes their PTIN: This is the preparer’s Preparer Tax Identification Number and they must include this in the document by law.

 

  1. Report any abusive behavior to IRS: Most preparers will be honest and provide excellent service, however, some are dishonest. To report any abusive or fraudulent actions, use Form 14157. If you suspect your return was changed without your consent, fill From 14157-A. These are available on gov any time.

 

As always, if you need any help with Tax Preparation and filing, Business Resource Partners is always here to help! We have our Accountant Michael, our Enrolled Agent Mythili, and our owner Lorrie who is a participant in the Annual Filing Season Program. Our front desk ladies Stephanie and Andrea would be happy to schedule appointments for your needs.Please contact us at (352) 236-2771 or visit us at 310 Almond Street Clermont FL, 34711.

$1 Billion Available!

The IRS has unclaimed federal income tax refunds totaling more than $1 Billion for roughly 1 million taxpayers who did not file a 2013 income tax return.

If you or someone you know did not file for taxes in 2013, you may be afraid to do so now for fear that you’ll be penalized or in legal trouble. Did you know there is no penalty for filing late if you are due a refund? You can still file a 2013 tax return with the IRS no later than this year’s Tuesday, April 18th deadline. There are an estimated 66,900 individuals who may be due 2013 refunds in Florida, totaling about $67,758.

The law usually provides most tax payers with a three-year window of opportunity for claiming a refund. The unclaimed money becomes property of the U.S Treasury if the tax payer does not file a return within the three years. If you are filing a 2013 tax return this year, make sure you properly address mail and postmark the tax return by the April 18th date.

If you have not filed taxes for 2014 & 2015, your check for your 2013 refund may be held. The refund will be allocated to any debts such as a state tax agency, money owed to the IRS, child support, or student loans.

You could lose more than just a refund for the year of 2013 if you do not file your taxes. Low or moderate income workers may be eligible for Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). In 2013, this credit was worth as much as $6,044.

If you have questions about how to get forms for prior year’s tax returns, visit the Forms and Publications page on the IRS website. These forms are available to you at no charge.

If you are missing any forms such as W-2, 1098, 1099, or 5498 for the years 2013-2015, you should contact your employer, bank, or other payer. If you are unable to get these forms from a previous employer, you can use the IRS’s tool for Getting Your Transcript Online and obtain your Wage & Income Transcript. You may also file Form 4506-T to request a transcript of your 2013 income and use the information to file your tax return

If you need to file your 2013 or later tax returns, Business Resource Partners will gladly provide this service for you! Please call our office and schedule your appointment with our tax professionals at (321) 236-2771 or visit us at 310 Almond Street Clermont, FL 34711.

IRS Warns of Video Relay Scam Targeting Deaf & Hearing Impaired

We’ve uncovered some IRS scams & myths this tax season, it’s amazing what others will come up with in attempt to steal money. Today, we are covering Video Relay Scam (VRS) that target deaf and hard of hearing.

Video Relay Services are oftentimes used as a video telecommunication service that allows individuals to communicate over video telephones with hearing people in real time, via a sign language interpreter. The problem is VRS interpreters do not scan calls for validity, so it is up to you to always confirm that the person calling is who they say they are.

If you or someone you know is deaf or hard of hearing receives a VRS call claiming to be the IRS, there are a few things you need to know:

  1. The IRS Will Never:

~Demand immediate payments or specific ways on how to pay (wire transfer, prepaid card, etc). The IRS will not call about taxes owed without first mailing an official letter.

~Threaten to call local police if you do not pay immediately.

~Demand payment without the opportunity to ask questions or appeal amount charged.

~Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.

   2. Receive a Suspicious Call or Know Someone Who Did?

~If you or someone you know is deaf or hard of hearing, you may call the IRS at (800) 829-1040 through VRS. They will be able to answer any questions including payment issues.

~If you received a call but know you don’t owe money and have not received an official IRS letter, report the incident right away. You can call the Treasury Inspector at (800) 366-4484.

~You may also file a complaint using the FTC Complaint Assistant. If it involves impersonating the IRS, include the phrase “IRS Telephone Scam” in the notes.

Our team at Business Resource Partners is happy to help with your tax preparation! Mythili, our Enrolled Agent, will be able to directly represent you to the IRS if any issues arise. For a full list of our awesome staff, visit our About Us section.

Call us at (321) 236-2771 to schedule an appointment, or visit us at 310 Almond Street Clermont FL, 34711.

OVERTIME LAW – Important News for Employers

The new overtime rule will not be going into effect on Dec 1st. At least temporarily the ruling has been blocked by an injunction issued by a federal district court in Texas. This injunction extends nationwide. Click to read more on the Overtime Law and the Injunction.

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More than just Bookkeeping – What is Business Resource Partners?

Business Resource Partners was founded in 2011 on the motto “More than just bookkeeping – Business Solutions.” We specialize in QuickBooks Accounting and Bookkeeping, but our expertise does not stop there. To reflect this, we have changed our logo to clarify what we do.

logo_brp_oct2016

Where does development come in? Development is defined on Meriam-webster.com as “the act or process of growing or causing something to grow or become larger or more advanced.”

Lorrie Reid, the founder and owner of Business Resource Partners, has over the past 25 years gathered an expertise that is not solely limited to the bookkeeping field. We can assist you with all stages of starting your business, from the day you decide to realize your ideas, including Business Plans, Marketing, Accounting and Employee Manuals & Payroll.

Netflix’s House of Cards Teaches Us On Why Most Companies Fail

Contributed by:  Michael Jacobson

HOC

As I read this article (https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/what-netflix-house-cards-can-teach-us-why-most-companies-abbott), I learned that the chief reason businesses fail is because they do not follow a Core vs. Critical principle emphasized in business. In order to elaborate, the Core is what your business is all about. The Critical is the challenge in delivering the business product or service to your customers.

People love Netflix due to “House of Cards” and other unique programming. In order for the company to satisfy the customers and realize its Core, Netflix had to deliver streaming quality, Critical, so customers would pay for the service. Customers do not care how House of Cards is delivered to them as long as they can watch the program wherever and whenever they desire. Netflix knew Amazon Web Services already offered excellent streaming software. Netflix used what was already existing so it could focus on gaining strength in content selection. Netflix did not have to go through the hardship of building its own streaming software. The company partnered with Toshiba and Panasonic so they could accomplish their Critical and bring Netflix-ready devices available for use. The company “outsourced Critical to remain focused on Core.”

HOC2Businesses fail because they lack partners to take on the Critical. Once you get your partners in your Critical, then Business Resource Partners is the perfect partner for your Core. We help you with having a complete set of financials that are understandable to you. When you have a complete set of books, you are ready for your taxes, your banker and much more. Be sure to call Business Resource Partners when you are ready for a partner in your Core.

Last call for Anyone Interested in Attending the Lunch & Learn!

Lunch & Learn
How to Understand Just About Anybody

limited seating – reservation required $10.00
Betsy Barbieux
Professional Development Coach
Image Inside & Out

Whether you are at work, at home, or volunteering, understanding the people around you is vital to good performance, good relationships, and excellent teamwork.
In this fun and informative interactive session, you’ll learn a lot about your preferred communication style and what those around you consider important when making decisions.

Thursday, October 22, 2015 11:30 – 1:00

Almond Street Business Center
310 Almond Street
Clermont, FL 34711
To RSVP e mail Ayesha Thomas with your lunch selection
office@business-resource-partner.com or Call 352-708-4919
$10 for lunch
RSVP with your choice – Payment guarantees your seat

Just a Week To Go! Don’t Miss Out!

Lunch & Learn
How to Understand Just About Anybody

limited seating – reservation required $10.00
Betsy Barbieux
Professional Development Coach
Image Inside & Out

Whether you are at work, at home, or volunteering, understanding the people around you is vital to good performance, good relationships, and excellent teamwork.
In this fun and informative interactive session, you’ll learn a lot about your preferred communication style and what those around you consider important when making decisions.

Thursday, October 22, 2015 11:30 – 1:00

Almond Street Business Center
310 Almond Street
Clermont, FL 34711
To RSVP e mail Ayesha Thomas with your lunch selection
office@business-resource-partner.com or Call 352-708-4919
$10 for lunch
RSVP with your choice – Payment guarantees your seat