Most Americans heard about the sequestration episode from late last year, where the government was shut down for weeks, thus affecting a wide array of federal departments. The Internal Revenue Service was one of these departments and, as such, it has been severely hampered this tax season.

For those who have questions about their 2013 tax situation — or if they are trying to deal with past debts or audits unrelated to the 2013 fiscal year — it will be a trying tax season. The IRS has a reduced budget and reduced staff, and all the while they have their usual workload (if not a greater workload).

This means that people who call in to the IRS seeking answers to their questions are in for a frustrating experience. Long waits, inadequate help or no answer at all could be your fate if you give the IRS a call. The IRS is even tightening up its in-person help centers, as they say they will only answer questions to basic tax questions.

So what does this mean for you? Well, if you need help with your tax filing, you may want to look elsewhere. A financial advisor, a tax counselor or even a volunteer tax assistance program could prove very beneficial to you.

But what if issues arise, or if you have a serious issue that requires the attention of the IRS — the attention that the IRS suddenly can’t give? In such a case, you should consult an experienced tax law attorney. With such legal help in your corner, you can rest assured your case is being handled appropriately and efficiently.

Source: New York Times, “Need Tax Help? I.R.S. May Not Be the Best Place to Go,” Ann Carrns, Jan. 31, 2014

 

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