Sunday, July 26, 2009


Imagine my surprise when I got an audit notice from the IRS that I owed over $700,000 in back taxes and penalties. So, I called the agent on the notice and try to find out why I owed all this money. It had to be some sort of mistake. This was 2004.

It wasn’t, according to the agent. You see, I earned $1,106,125.00 from a barter company called Intagio. At least, that is what the 1099-B form said. But, I said, I didn’t earn this much and I wanted proof.

Eight years ago, I traded some furniture through Intagio for some services. The total amount was a little over $70,000.

So, about six weeks later, I got this pile of paper in the mail from the IRS with all kinds of transactions sent by a rogue computer at Intagio. They weren’t right and I contacted Intagio to get this corrected, and they did shortly thereafter. This was 2005.

It took me nearly two years and several visits to a local IRS office to convince them my position was correct. I went through levies and threats and all the stuff the IRS does. Finally, I sat down with one person who got it all settled, or so I thought. This was 2007.

About two months ago, I got a notice that I owed $28,000 for back taxes and penalties related to a 2001 return. Again, I went through the process of finding what this was all about.

I just received a packet in the mail. And there it is, $1,106,125.00 on a line on the form in the income column.

Here we go again. This is 2009.


  1. ....and here I thought only that kind of thing happened in C-A-N-A-D-A! I guess we aren't that 'backward' afterall. :) Wanna bet if they had over-paid YOU, it would be a 'quick fix'.

    Hope you get it straightened out soon.


  2. What a nightmare, Tom! Guess you heard the IRS is asking for public input on how to improve services. Maybe you could write them a nice note.

  3. Eeek!!! Bad enough to go through it once, but twice....??

    Good luck, Tom -- hope you get it sorted out quick!!