Audit of Individual Income Tax Returns by the Internal Revenue Service

GGD-76-54: Published: Dec 2, 1976. Publicly Released: Dec 2, 1976.

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An examination of Internal Revenue Service (IRS) procedures shows that discretion is generally used in auditing individual income tax returns, but some improvements are needed in consistency and safeguards for the individual.

In most cases, taxpayers are assessed only after examination of supporting records, but some are assessed after failure to respond to notification of audit. There is some inconsistency in determinations made by examiners because of varying criteria used. Most taxpayers interviewed reported favorable treatment, but many were not adequately advised of their rights.

Recommendation for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Recommendation: IRS should: (1) revise audit reports and letters to clarify options to taxpayers and avoid their agreement with questionable findings; (2) establish uniform criteria; and (3) require examiners to inform taxpayers of their rights, including the right of appeal.

    Agency Affected:


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