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4 tips to prepare for an audit

You're being audited. While you're not thrilled, what you're really concerned about is making a mistake. You don't want to be blamed for trying to break the tax laws, and you want everything to go as smoothly -- and quickly -- as possible.

Below are four tips that can help.

1. Work on your records all year.

Don't just get your records in order for the audit. This should be a year-long process. That way, when the audit happens, you're ready. You won't overlook anything.

2. Learn about the process.

What questions are you going to have to answer? What are they looking for? How long does the process take? The more you know, the more prepared you can be.

3. If you don't think you did anything wrong, be confident.

Try to stay positive. Trust yourself. Focus on showing that you didn't break the law or make any mistakes. Never admit to anything you did not do.

4. Be a professional.

When you have a meeting with the auditor, show up to it on time or even a few minutes early. Dress as if you're going to a business meeting. Shake hands. Be kind, even if you're frustrated. Have all of your paperwork in order. Being professional and helpful will go a long way.

Naturally, while using these four tips, you always want to make sure you know all of your legal rights, what is expected of you and how the law governs this process. Be sure you understand the legal options that you have and how to proceed every step of the way.

Source: Bankrate, "How to prepare for an audit," Kay Bell, accessed Aug. 12, 2017

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