IRS Audit Bogged Down? Fast Track Settlement is Here!

January 30, 2014

For years the IRS has had a very successful program for large businesses to resolve disputes arising during an IRS exam.  Called Fast Track Settlement (FTS), this provided an avenue for quick resolution of disputed issues.  However, FTS was not available for small business exams, resulting in significant time spent on formal appeals or litigation, which could take months or even years to resolve.  Now, small businesses can also take advantage of this program, which shaves resolution time to within 60 days.

Because taxpayers electing to resolve disputes in this manner lose none of their appeal rights, the availability of FTS to small businesses is a welcome addition to the traditional resolution options.

The process works by submitting a one-page application and, after acceptance, the taxpayer and a representative from exams meets with an Appeals representative who acts as a mediator.  The Appeals representative has mediation skills and settlement authority.  While this may seem like asking the fox to watch the hen house, Appeals is independent from the IRS and does not take sides, and our experience with Appeals is consistent with its stated mission.

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