Don’t worry if you receive one of the millions of letters the IRS sends to taxpayers every year, but don’t ignore it either. IRS letters typically are about a specific issue on your federal tax return or tax account and include specific instructions on what you need to do to respond.
Generally, the IRS sends a letter if:
You owe additional tax;
You are due a larger refund; or
The IRS is requesting payment or needs additional information about your return.
Many of these letters can be dealt with simply, without having to call or visit an IRS office. For example, you may get a letter that states the IRS made a change or correction to your tax return.
If you do receive this letter, review the information and compare it with your original return. If you agree, you usually don’t need to reply unless it gives you other instructions or you need to make a payment. However, if you don’t agree with the letter, it’s important for you to respond.
Write to explain why you disagree and include any information and documents you want the IRS to consider. Mail your reply to the address shown in the letter along with the bottom tear-off portion of the letter, if provided. Keep copies of any correspondence with your tax records. Allow at least 30 days for a response from the IRS.
If you have questions, call the telephone number in the letter. Have a copy of your tax return and the correspondence available when you call. Check Understanding Your IRS Notice or Letter on IRS.gov for samples of the letters we send, including the reason we send it and a list of enclosures we might include.
Since parts of our letters vary depending on account conditions, the samples may not exactly match the letters we mail. The basic message, though, will be the same.
If you receive a letter that looks suspicious and appears as though it came from the IRS, visit the Report Phishing and Online Scams page on IRS.gov. You can also call 1-800- 829-1040.The IRS never asks for personal information via e-mail or social media.