Typical Letters Received from the IRS

by jscalona

Most people will understandably fly into a panic when they receive a letter or notice from the IRS. It's easy to automatically assume the news is bad. However, this may not be the case! There are several letters the IRS typically sends out, and not all of them are trouble. Let’s take a look at some of the most common letters the IRS drafts:

Balance Due
There are a handful of notices you can receive from the IRS that indicate you have a balance due. Getting one letter instead of another does not mean you owe more or less, it all depends on your circumstance.

The CP11 series of forms will be sent to you by the IRS when you owe money from a miscalculation on your tax return. The CP11 letter lets you know there is a general miscalculation on the return. Maybe you forgot to carry the one and you ended up paying less than you needed to.

The CP11A notice will inform you when you make a mistake involving your Earned Income Credit (EIC). If they believe the numbers were wrong with the EIC, they will let you know how much you need to pay or return.

If you receive a CP21A, CP21E, CP21I, CP22A, CP22E, or CP22I, that means you owe money from an amended return. This could come about either from an audit or from you sending in the amended portion yourself.

It’s not all bad news! Did you get a CP21B letter in the mail? Then you should be smiling, as you’re about to receive a refund! The IRS made a mistake and is sending you money. Feel privileged as this rarely occurs.

Another notice you can get from the IRS that’s not necessarily bad news is the CP31 letter. This will inform you that your refund check was returned to the IRS office. They simply need an updated address so you can get your money.