can't mention IRS abuse without mentioning the IRS Collection Division. The
two are synonymous. The men and women who work in the Collection Division are
known as Revenue Officers (R.O.'s). R.O.'s can be compared to bad debt
collectors or bounty hunters. They are not rewarded for being nice or helpful
to taxpayers. They are rewarded for closing cases and collecting tax.
R.O.'s are trained to "be your friend " at first because they want
you to volunteer all your personal and business information. You know, just
file this and disclose that, and everything will be all right. And oh, by the
way, sign everything under the penalties of perjury. When the R.O. has all the
chips on his side of the table, he suddenly turns into the meanest, nastiest
person you have ever met. Revenue Officers will lie to you time after time if
there are no witnesses around. If you get smart with an R.O., he will enter
all kinds of derogatory information in your file that will indicate you are
hostile and uncooperative. If you have to appeal your case, everyone up
the ladder will automatically view you as hostile and uncooperative.
It is interesting to note that an R.O. can lie to the taxpayer and prepare
bogus reports without fear of a reprimand. However, you, the taxpayer, can be
punished with monetary fines and/or jail time for lying to an R.O., or
omitting a bank account on one of your financial statements. If R.O.'s were
required to submit their reports under the penalties of perjury, the entire
Collection Division would implode.
R.O.'s enjoy making surprise visits to your home or office, and they will
start pumping you for information as soon as you open the door, before you
have had time to think about your answers. Caution: If you come face-to-face
with an R.O. simply identify yourself, take his card, and tell him you will
have someone contact him in a few days. Do not invite him in for a visit. Get
away as soon as you can. Let a professional handle your case. R.O.'s are not
your friends. They are bounty hunters and they will lie to you and violate
your rights to get whatever they want as long as there are no witnesses.
According to a March 18, 2003, article in the Wall Street Journal, the
Treasury Inspector General has received more than 3,500 complaints filed
against IRS employees for such acts as falsification of documents,
destroying documents, harassment, threats of violence,
threats of audit, assault and battery, and extortion.
Many professional organizations, such as the American Bar Association, have
openly criticized the Internal Revenue Service for the low standards required
for initial employment with the Collection Division. Controversies oftentimes
occur simply because the new R.O. was poorly trained and does not have the
ability to read or comprehend the Internal Revenue Manual he is supposed to
follow. This pattern of hiring less-than-qualified individuals leads to many
mistakes and abuses that never get reported. Yet this is the person authorized
to seize your bank account, your automobile, and your wages.
Whether the R.O. is a poorly trained beginner or a veteran collector, it won't
be good for you, the taxpayer, to be alone. Don't become a victim of the IRS
Collection Division. Hire a professional to protect your rights every step of
Taxpayers who find
themselves at odds with the IRS should never speak to them
directly, even if they’re completely innocent. Get an expert
who deals with the IRS every day.