Inside the mind of an IRS auditor… the Audit Technique Guides

Inside the mind of an IRS auditor… the Audit Technique Guides

Fun fact about the IRS, their website is a treasure trove of information.

Like an overwhelming amount of information.

One of the unique things that you can find on the IRS website is a catalog of interesting guides called the “Audit Techniques Guides 

The link to the IRS page is at the bottom of of this article but straight from the site is this description:

These Audit Techniques Guides (ATGs) help IRS examiners during audits by providing insight into issues and accounting methods unique to specific industries. While ATGs are designed to provide guidance for IRS employees, they’re also useful to small business owners and tax professionals who prepare returns.

ATGs explain industry-specific examination techniques and include common, as well as, unique industry issues, business practices and terminology. Guidance is also provided on the examination of income, interview techniques and evaluation of evidence. So they may be helpful for business and tax planning purposes. To find out more about how these guides may be helpful to you, watch this short video.

Audit Techniques Guides are available here in Adobe PDF, or as webpages, or both. The PDF versions must be viewed with the Acrobat Reader.

Note: These guides are current through the publication date. Since changes may have occurred after the publication date that would affect the accuracy of these documents, no guarantees are made concerning the technical accuracy after the publication date.

The interesting thing to me about these resources is that it gives you an insight into the “mind” of an IRS audit agent. 

These are some of the resources that are used to train IRS agents in how to conduct an audit.

Sectors that the ATG’s cover include:

  • Architects and landscape architects
  • Attorneys
  • Business consultants 
  • Taxpayers and businesses who “Capitalize” assets or tangible property 
  • Cash intensive businesses
  • Childcare providers
  • Construction industry businesses
  • Farmers 
  • And more.

If you’re a small business in these areas it could be worth your time to check out these resources as this can be an invaluable resource to get inside of the IRS thought process when looking at your business.

You see, the government has a system to take your money through the tax code.

And most CPA’s and accountants are so busy preparing taxes and helping their client stay compliant with tax law that they simply miss the opportunities that there are to save serious tax dollars.

That is because they are lacking the time and energy to track those tax strategies down and then communicate those to you.

That is where Tax Reduction University fills the gap. The TRU Tax Strategy System is the missing link between remaining captive to the government's system of oppressive taxation and finally declaring freedom from large tax bills forever 

And the content of TRU is designed with resources such as the ATG’s as the foundation for giving the small business owners of America a system to combat the government's system.

Link for the IRS ATG’s:

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The TRU Method Of Choosing A Financial Advisor


Financial Planning Ties In With Tax Planning To Achieve Tax Savings Now And In The Future.


Here Are Some Key Questions And Considerations When Choosing A Financial Advisor:


  1. Understand What Licenses The Advisor Holds And What Those Licenses Enable Them To Do For You
  • Some Solutions Require Certain Education And Legal Licensing. Knowing If The Advisor Has Limitations On What They Can Provide Is Vital.


  1. Understand If The Advisor Is A Fiduciary
  • In Essence A Fiduciary Must Place Your Needs And Interests Ahead Of Their Own And Act In Your Best Interest. 


  1. Understand The Role The Advisor Will Play In Your Financial And Tax Planning

- How Often Will They Meet With You And What Is The Purpose And Agenda Of Those Meetings?


  1. Understand How, When, And By Whom The Advisor Gets Paid For Their Time, Energy, And Effort
  • We All Have A Right To Earn A Living And We All Have A Right To Have Transparency Around What We Pay For Services.


  1. Understand If The Financial Advisor Is Captive To Their Firm Or Broker Dealer
  • Is The Advisor Only Able To Provide Solutions Provided By Their Firm (Captive) Or Are They Able To Meet Your Needs With Tools From A Variety Of Sources (Independent)?


TRU Recommends Working With A Certified Financial Planner (CFP). 

These Are Professionals Who Should Value Comprehensive Planning And Be Able To Integrate Tax Planning As Part Of The Value That They Provide.



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