Preventing A Tax Audit

Preventing A Tax Audit

Wichita Falls, TX- The Internal Revenue Service is expected to conduct one million audits this year. That is down 200,000 from 2014, but there are some things that could cause your tax return to stand out.

Newschannel 6 reached out to a local Certified Public Accountant to get some advice on how you can keep your tax return from raising red flags.

Over the next few months, many Texomans will be gathering documents and crunching numbers in order to file their taxes.

"I did. And I did them wrong," said Aubri Forbis, a Wichita Falls resident. "I got married last year and for some reason I didn't put that down on my taxes."

In Aubri's case it was an unintentional mistake. While the Internal Revenue Service has not requested to audit Forbis tax return yet, there are other ways to red flags.

"Not having all your W-2 forms, 1099s. There may be incoming items missing," said Randy Greenway, a certified public accountant with the MWH Group.

To prevent that from happening, he advises his clients to maintain important documentation throughout the year.

"They audit tax returns by selecting them at random or they audit them based upon information that indicates to the IRS that return might have errors and therefore needs to be audited," said Greenway.

When the IRS does audit your taxes they will be using a method called the Discriminant Index Function or (DIF) score.

"That system basically grades each return that's filled in certain areas that the IRS has identified as being high risked or highly probable of errors or understatement of reported income," said Greenway.

Some other items that may cause the Feds to review your tax return:

  • Filing for the home office deduction 
  • Job expenses 
  • Rental losses 
  • Schedule c expenses 
  • Charitable contributions 

While Forbis tax return was not due to any of these complex issues. She hopes everyone can learn from her mistake, because you never know when the IRS will audit you.

"I would always recommend having someone do it for you, so you won't mess up like I did," said Forbis.

Jimmie Johnson, Newschannel 6